Ferdinand Georg Waldmüller’s painting, “The Expected One,” shows a woman in a purple dress strolling down a path holding something in her hand.
Waldmüller who was from Austria lived between 1793 – 1865 and painted the young girl in 1860. The painting actually gets its name from the young man who is hiding in the foreground near the path holding a flower for the girl.
Recently several viewing the painting online are convinced the young woman is scrolling through an iPhone, and certainly, it is eerily similar to what we see every day walking down our streets.
Of course, along with that comes suggestions by those with a sci-fi bend that this painting is evidence of time travel.
But it is a sign of how much things have changed.
As the experts point out, most people in 1860 would have known exactly what that woman was holding. It was a prayer book that contained prayers, Bible verses, liturgy, and devotionals that people could recite privately or even together with others.
While some commentators sarcastically asked what a book was, it equally highlights the dramatic spiritual changes that have taken place in society.