Johannes Vermeer, "Woman Holding a Balance"

“On earth the mother is the image of endlessness ... She is ever the same, the boundless abundance, the silence, the immutability of life itself, in its power of conceiving, of bearing, of bringing forth.”

Charles Bartlett, "Hawaiian Mother and Child"

“If one wishes to find the source of great personal endowments one must not proceed from sons to their fathers, but to their mothers.”

Andrea Mantegna, "Madonna with Sleeping Child"

“As at the hour of birth the mother stakes her life without reserve for the child, so after its birth her life no longer belongs to herself, but to the child.”

Mary Cassatt, "The Child's Bath"

“It is the maternal woman ... who is the great conqueror of the every day. Daily she controls it anew by making it bearable, and her victory is greatest when least observed.”

Carl Holsoe, "Afternoon Tea"

“As the motherly woman feeds the hungry, so also does she console the afflicted."

Johannes Vermeer, "The Milkmaid"

"The weak and the guilty, the neglected and the persecuted, even the justly punished, all those whom a judicial world no longer wishes to support and protect, find their ultimate rights vindicated in the consolation and the compassion that the maternal woman gives.”

Marcantonio Bassetti, "Old Nun"

"... the real mother sometimes represents the woman who possesses only spiritual maternity.”

Albert Anker, "The Creche"

“For a woman to be a physician, a guardian, teacher, or nurse is therefore not a profession in the masculine sense of the word, but it is a form of spiritual motherhood.”

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, "Mother and Child"

“As the woman in giving birth carries life on into endlessness, so in her capacity of nurturing and sheltering life she injects into time an element of eternity.”

Frederic Leighton, "The Music Lesson"

“The mother who teaches her child its first words of the language that throughout life will remain its mother tongue, who sings to the child its first native songs and tells to it the fairy tales of its people, represents ... the earliest spiritual influence on the life of the child. This is of immeasurable importance not only for the child, but for culture.”