Saint Jerome in the Wilderness1475 - 1480
Saint Jerome (ca. 347-420), one of the four Latin Fathers of the Church (along with Saints Augustine, Ambrose, and Gregory the Great), is particularly famous for translating the Bible into Latin, known as the Vulgate Bible. The saint spent four years in the Syrian desert as a hermit, mortifying his flesh and elevating his spirit through study. The subject has given Pinturicchio—one of the foremost painter in Italy during the 15th century and a particular favorite among the popes—the opportunity to depict a monumental, rocky landscape, while the lizard and the scorpion call attention to the desolation of the scene. The open book contains a passage from a letter attributed to Saint Augustine in which Jerome is compared to Saint John the Baptist, another saint who lived in the wilderness.
- H: 59 x W: 41 3/4 in. (149.8 x 106 cm)
- oil on canvas
- Courtesy of the Walters Art Museum
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