In the Tondo Pitti (commissioned by Bartolomeo Pitti) any formal frame is ignored and the outline is slightly oval. With her left hand Mary embraces the infant Jesus who leans his whole weight against her, bracing his head with a bent arm resting on the open book (which symbolizes wisdom) lying on her lap.The Madonna is seated on a low block of stone filling the entire composition. But, owing to the slightly oval format and to her head breaking the tondo’s edge, she does not appear to be crowded. Full locks of hair frame her angular face with its deep dimples and more prominent chin. She wears an unusual ornamental head covering — the first in a series later employed by the master — which heightens the expression of watchfulness in her face.
The figure of Saint John also plays a subordinate role and is unfinished. He appears to have caught the Madonna’s attention as she looks back over her shoulder