This work was painted as the high altarpiece of the church of S. Alessandro, Brescia.
The solemnity of the central scene of the Nativity is relieved by a vision of rejoicing angels occupying the upper part of the panel. On either side, panels depict Saint Alexander (lower left) and Saint Jerome in penitence (lower right) with his lion, a stone and a crucifix. Above these lateral panels are Saint Gaudioso (upper left) and Saint Filippo Benizzi (upper right). The strongly Venetian character of Romanino's work is most apparent in the heroic and richly coloured figure of Saint Alexander (Alessandro), who is in the place of honour, at the right hand of the Holy Family, as befits the patron saint of the church.
Centre panel 265 x 117.2 cm; lower side panels 159.5 x 64.2 cm and 159.1 x 64.8 cm; upper side panels 74.2 x 64.9 cm and 74.2 x 65.2 cm.