Fra Angelico painted this altarpiece for the church of San Domenico when he lived in the Dominican convent of Cortona (till 1438).  This work is noteworthy for its exquisite colors, its elegant figures and the skillful use of perspective.  All have combined to create an atmosphere of peaceful yet profound meditation. 

[Fra Angelico's tryptych of the Madonna with Child and Saints (1436-37), painted for same church, is also preserved in the museum.]

Predella: Life of Mary (in the last scene, Mary consigns the Dominican habit to St. Dominic)


In the predella below the Annunciation, near the two farthest edges, two scenes are painted (23 x 14 cm each). The first represent the Birth of the Virgin, the other The Virgin Consigns the Habit to St Dominic.

There are five central scenes of the life of the Virgin, one after the other without interruption (23 x 183 cm), namely (from the left). Marriage of the Virgin, The Visitation, Adoration of the Magi, Presentation of Jesus at the Temple, Death of the Virgin.