According to legend, suitors for the hand of the Virgin presented rods at the temple in Jerusalem; she was to marry the suitor whose rod flowered; here Joseph's has blossomed as a dove. The Virgin's parents Joachim and Anne in the background are identified by their haloes.
The panel was flanked by the 'Presentation of the Virgin' and the 'Coronation of the Virgin' to form a triptych. The frame is original.
The back has a punched and painted diamond design, typical of a folding altarpiece, such as a triptych. The position of the signature suggests that this was the central panel.