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The Puritan

A work made of bronze.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of bronze.


Modeled 1883–86, cast after 1899


Augustus Saint-Gaudens (American, born Ireland, 1848–1907)

About this artwork

Striding purposefully forward with a knotty walking stick and a hefty Bible, this figure of a Puritan embodies perseverance, resilience, and stern morality—qualities expressed with both admiration and a degree of humor. Augustus Saint-Gaudens first created this portrayal of Deacon Samuel Chapin, a 17th-century leader in Springfield, Massachusetts, as a large-scale monument. The work was unveiled on Thanksgiving Day 1887, underlining the importance of settler origin stories for some members of the local community. Smaller reproductions like this one proved immensely popular at the turn of the 20th century, demonstrating the expansive and enduring reach of such mythmaking.


On View, Gallery 161


Arts of the Americas


Augustus Saint-Gaudens


The Puritan


United States (Object made in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.

Modeled 1883–1886




Inscribed recto, bottom-middle, on base, in cast: "THE PVRITAN"; inscribed verso, bottom-middle, on base, in cast: "COPYRIGHT BY / AVGVSTVS SAINT GAVDENS / •M•D CCCXCIX".


77.5 × 50.8 × 33 cm (30 1/2 × 20 × 13 in.)

Credit Line

Bequest of Brooks McCormick

Reference Number


IIIF Manifest  The International Image Interoperability Framework (IIIF) represents a set of open standards that enables rich access to digital media from libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural institutions around the world.

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Extended information about this artwork

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