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Saint  Anthony of Padua Taking the Habit of the Franciscan Order
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Saint Anthony of Padua Taking the Habit of the Franciscan Order


Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description Inside a typical Renaissance church complete with an altarpiece of the Madonna and Child between two saints, Saint Anthony of Padua (born Fernando Martins de Bulhões, 1195-1231), takes his vows as a Franciscan monk. The saint is shown kneeling humbly before his superior who offers the order's distinctive brown habit. According to legend, Anthony was a Dominican before adopting the Franciscan rule, hence the two Dominicans standing behind Anthony holding their dinstictive black and white habit which he has cast off. A group of Franciscans stand at the right and sing in celebration while a group of finely dressed young, presumably representing the rich social environment of Anthony's upbrining in Lisbon, are shown near the door of the church at the left. As indicated by its small size and horizontal orientation, the picture was originally part of a predella, the lowest register of an altarpiece. Predellas were often illustrated with scenes from the lives of the figures represented in the altarpiece’s central compartments. This painting, together with its companion panel depicting the “A Franciscan Monk Preaching” (Walters 37.507), must have come from a now-unidentified altarpiece in a Franciscan church.
Conservation
Date Description Narrative
12/31/1969Examinationexamined for condition
6/01/1946Treatmentinpainted; varnish removed or reduced
1/20/1958Treatmentcleaned; cradle removed; inpainted
Exhibitions
  • God's Minstrel: St. Francis of Assisi. The Walters Art Gallery, Baltimore. 1982.
  • Seeing Music in Medieval Manuscripts. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2014.
  • Sanctity Pictured: The Art of the Dominican and Franciscan Orders in Renaissance Italy. Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville. 2014-2015.
  • The Saint Francis Missal. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2020.
Provenance Don Marcello Massarenti Collection, Rome [date and mode of acquisition unknown] [1881 catalogue: no. 29; 1897 catalogue: no. 79]; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1902, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters with the Massarenti Collection, 1902

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Period
ca. 1515-1525 (Renaissance)
Medium
oil on wood panel
(Painting & Drawing)
Accession Number
37.547
Measurements
Painted surface without auxiliary support H: 15 1/16 x W: 22 5/8 x D: 1/4 in. (38.2 x 57.4 x 0.7 cm); Framed without buildup H: 20 x w: 27 1/8 x D: 2 in. (50.8 x 68.9 x 5.08 cm)
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