Among the works inside the Grande Museo del Duomo of Milan, there are some which still perform a liturgical function, such as the Borromeo Candelabra, or the Madonna dell’ Idea, carried in procession for Candlemas, just to name a couple.
Among the large paintings narrating the Life and miracles of San Carlo, one of the most important painting cycles of this genre that exist today, one of the works has lost its place among the tall nave of the Duomo and amidst the other impressive canvases of the miracles of San Carlo Borromeo, which are usually exhibited in the Cathedral on the eve of the feast dedicated to the saint, November 4, and is now found inside the Museum.
It is a tempera painting depicting the Miracle of Clementina Crivelli Arese, also known as the Miracle of the difficult childbirth. The work, created by Giovan Battista Crespi called Cerano, for the occasion of the canonization of the Archbishop of Milan (1610), is today a focal point among the works of the Borromaic era of the Grande Museo, constituting an element of the story told in the Museum of the history of the Cathedral and its Fabbrica and the tradition of the Quadroni (large paintings), preserved in the Cathedral storage. The work of the Museo is preserved here because it is no longer suitable for display with the other paintings of the cycle, since at an unspecified date in the early 1900s it was cut roughly in half. The missing piece, located today in Modena, depicts the child miraculously alive in the arms of the nurse.