Child Jesus

Child Jesus

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The Child Jesus represents Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

 from his Nativity
Nativity of Jesus
The Nativity of Jesus, or simply The Nativity, refers to the accounts of the birth of Jesus in two of the Canonical gospels and in various apocryphal texts....

 to age 12. At 13 he was considered to be adult, in accordance with the Jewish custom of his time, and that of most Christian
A Christian is a person who adheres to Christianity, an Abrahamic, monotheistic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the Canonical gospels and the letters of the New Testament...

 cultures until recent centuries.

The Child Jesus is frequently depicted in art, from around the third or fourth century onwards, in icon
An icon is a religious work of art, most commonly a painting, from Eastern Christianity and in certain Eastern Catholic churches...

s and paintings, sculpture, and all the media available. Common depictions are of Nativity
Nativity of Jesus in art
The Nativity of Jesus has been a major subject of Christian art since the 4th century. The artistic depictions of the Nativity or birth of Jesus, celebrated at Christmas, are based on the narratives in the Bible, in the Gospels of Matthew and Luke, and further elaborated by written, oral and...

 scenes showing the birth of Jesus, with his mother, Mary, and his legal father Joseph
Saint Joseph
Saint Joseph is a figure in the Gospels, the husband of the Virgin Mary and the earthly father of Jesus Christ ....

Depictions as a baby with his mother, known as Madonna and Child, are iconographical
Iconography is the branch of art history which studies the identification, description, and the interpretation of the content of images. The word iconography literally means "image writing", and comes from the Greek "image" and "to write". A secondary meaning is the painting of icons in the...

 types in Eastern
Eastern Christianity
Eastern Christianity comprises the Christian traditions and churches that developed in the Balkans, Eastern Europe, Asia Minor, the Middle East, Northeastern Africa, India and parts of the Far East over several centuries of religious antiquity. The term is generally used in Western Christianity to...

 and Western
Western Christianity
Western Christianity is a term used to include the Latin Rite of the Catholic Church and groups historically derivative thereof, including the churches of the Anglican and Protestant traditions, which share common attributes that can be traced back to their medieval heritage...

 traditions. Other scenes from his time as a baby, of his circumcision
Male circumcision is the surgical removal of some or all of the foreskin from the penis. The word "circumcision" comes from Latin and ....

, Presentation at the temple, the Adoration of the Three Magi, and the Flight to Egypt, are common. Scenes showing his developing years are rarer (these years are hardly mentioned in the Gospel
A gospel is an account, often written, that describes the life of Jesus of Nazareth. In a more general sense the term "gospel" may refer to the good news message of the New Testament. It is primarily used in reference to the four canonical gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John...


A number of apocryphal texts, the Infancy Gospels grew up with legendary accounts of the intervening period, and these are sometimes shown.

The Scriptures and many apocryphal works were passed down either by word of mouth or through song, and later in works of art. The symbolism of the Child Jesus in art reached its apex during the Renaissance
The Renaissance was a cultural movement that spanned roughly the 14th to the 17th century, beginning in Italy in the Late Middle Ages and later spreading to the rest of Europe. The term is also used more loosely to refer to the historical era, but since the changes of the Renaissance were not...

: the holy family was a central theme in the works of Leonardo Da Vinci
Leonardo da Vinci
Leonardo di ser Piero da Vinci was an Italian Renaissance polymath: painter, sculptor, architect, musician, scientist, mathematician, engineer, inventor, anatomist, geologist, cartographer, botanist and writer whose genius, perhaps more than that of any other figure, epitomized the Renaissance...

 and many other masters.

The canonical gospels say nothing of Jesus' childhood between his infancy and the Finding in the Temple
Finding in the Temple
The Finding in the Temple, also called "Christ among the Doctors" or the Disputation , was an episode in the early life of Jesus depicted in the Gospel of Luke. It is the only event of the later childhood of Jesus mentioned in a gospel.The episode is only described in...

 at the age of twelve.

See also

  • Infant Jesus of Prague
    Infant Jesus of Prague
    Infant Jesus of Prague is a famous statue of infant Jesus located in the Church of Our Lady Victorious in Malá Strana, Prague.- History :Its earliest history can be traced back to Prague in the year 1628 when the small, 19-inch high, wax statue of the Infant Jesus was given by Princess Polyxena...

  • Nativity of Jesus
    Nativity of Jesus
    The Nativity of Jesus, or simply The Nativity, refers to the accounts of the birth of Jesus in two of the Canonical gospels and in various apocryphal texts....

  • Santo Niño de Atocha
    Santo Niño de Atocha
    The Santo Niño de Atocha is a Roman Catholic depiction of the Child Jesus and is popular in the Hispanic cultures of Spain, Mexico, Philippines and the southwestern United States, especially New Mexico.-History:...

  • Niño Dios of Mexico
    Niño Dios of Mexico
    The Niño Dios of Mexico is a tradition of venerating the Child Jesus in Mexico which has taken root from the time it was introduced in the 16th century and then syncretized with pre-Hispanic elements to form some unique traditions...

  • Santo Niño de Cebu
    Santo Niño de Cebu
    The Santo Niño de Cebú is a Roman Catholic figure of the Child Jesus highly similar to the Infant Jesus of Prague. Like the image's counterpart in Prague, the figure is clothed in expensive textile robes mostly donations from fervent devotees in the Philippines and abroad...

  • Holy Infant of Good Health
    Holy Infant of Good Health
    The Holy Infant of Good Health is a statue of the Christ Child regarded by many to be miraculous, which was found in 1939, in Morelia , Mexico. The statue is eleven inches tall and has apparently been responsible for many healings. The veneration of the statue was approved by Luis M. Altamirano y...

  • Madonna and Child
  • Holy Prepuce
    Holy Prepuce
    The Holy Prepuce, or Holy Foreskin is one of several relics attributed to Jesus, a product of the circumcision of Jesus....

  • Holy Umbilical Cord
    Holy Umbilical Cord
    The Holy Umbilical Cord is a first class Catholic relic of Christ. Christian teaching generally states that Christ was assumed into heaven corporeally...

  • Infancy Gospels
  • Baby Jesus theft
    Baby Jesus theft
    Baby Jesus theft is the theft of plastic or ceramic figurines of the infant Jesus from outdoor public and private nativity displays during the Christmas season...

  • Ježíšek
    Ježíšek is a Christmas gift-giving figure used in the Czech Republic. Similar gift-giving figures also appear in other countries such as Slovakia or Hungary ....