This tender, domestic scene of the Virgin and Child conveys some fundamental religious symbolism. As the cat plays with the hem of Mary’s dress at left, a snake slithers out from underneath. Mary however has managed to trap the snake under her foot, thus foreshadowing Christ’s destiny as the Redeemer, the triumph of Good over Evil and the overcoming of the Original Sin. Outside, Joseph looks in through the window, present but separate from the Virgin and Child. This plate is part of a small, probably never completed series of prints of a modest, horizontal format dedicated to various scenes from the childhood and youth of Christ. For other prints belonging to this group see lots 35, 36, 38 & 39.