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The Adoration of the Shepherds

A work made of engraving on paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of engraving on paper.


c. 1520


Master HFE
Italian, early 16th century

About this artwork

Still unidentified by name, the 16th-century artist known as Master H. E. signed his curiously themed prints with an H. E. monogram. The Master H. E.’s Adoration of the Shepherds is an unusually windblown and eerie envisioning of the scene, set in an architectural framework more reminiscent of a ruined temple than a stable. The awestruck shepherds, the restless farm animals, and the harsh sun work together to suggest that the prints’ viewers as well are witnessing a momentous historical event, one tinged here with a hint of the supernatural.


Currently Off View


Prints and Drawings


Master H.E.


The Adoration of the Shepherds


Italy (Artist's nationality:)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Engraving on paper


30.7 × 22.8 cm (12 1/8 × 9 in.)

Credit Line

Bequest of Mrs. Potter Palmer, Jr.

Reference Number


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Extended information about this artwork

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