The adoration of the magi. Fra Angelico and Fra Fillipo Lippi. 1440/1460. The National Gallery of Art. Washington, DC. The peafowl in this painting is an ancient Christian symbol of resurrection and rebirth. The mythological roots for this association are in a legend that the peafowl was immortal because its body never decayed. Peafowl feathers are sometimes components of altar adornment at Easter and Christmas.