Poland's Queen

For Poles, the Black Madonna of Czestochowa is far more than an object of Roman Catholic reverence. It is a source of historical continuity, a cause and remembrance of national liberation from foreign enemies, and a fount of miracles. The 4-ft. by 2½-ft. gilt-and-tempera dark-hued portrait of the Virgin Mary and Christ child is laden with gems and silver. By legend, the painting is attributed to St. Luke the Evangelist, and was executed on a table top from the house of Mary, Joseph and Jesus in Nazareth. It origins are unknown, but it...

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