In this painting, which was given to us by Magdalena, you can see a very good example of a "censer", which can be seen swinging from the hand of a woman in the lower right of the painting (that is to our right) dressed in white. As you can well notice the "censer" is in motion, swinging, etc.
The smells of incense / frankincense / myrrh, etc., were used to cover the smell of the dead, and to frighten away evil spirits! But, perhaps my description is too simple so you might read;
http://www.fathom.com/course/21701787/session3.html for a better explanation!
This is all the more interesting since these gifts to a new born baby Jesus were presented by the "wise men!" Would a gift like this show that they understood the impending death of the baby? Or was it more a case that these items were very valuable?
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