21. St. Peter and Paul Church, East Harling, East window, Adoration
of the Shepherds, 1480.
Descended upon by angels while in the fields, the shepherds heard
the news of the saviorís birth and traveled to Bethlehem to see the great
miracle for themselves. Encountering Mary and the Christ child, the
shepherds are depicted in an identical state of adoration as the Kings.
The shepherd in the forefront doffs his cap on bent knee before the Blessed
Virgin and her child. The striking blue piece of glass used for his
cape is unique and not found in any other part of the window. The
two other shepherds stand behind him. The rightmost shepherd plays
upon pipes while the one closest to Mary holds a lamb. The proximity
of the two nurturing figures and their uncanny similarity emerges as the
central focus of the window. The shepherds bow not only to the child,
but also to the protective mother figure, constantly tending her flock,
to whom they can so wholeheartedly relate.