The Bodies of Saints Peter and Paul Hidden in the Catacombs

A work made of etching and drypoint in black on ivory laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of etching and drypoint in black on ivory laid paper.

Date:

1647/51

Artist:

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione
Italian, 1609-1664

About this artwork

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione was one of the most original graphic artists of the 17th century, exchanging prints and ideas with his contemporary Rembrandt. This ambitious composition reflects the influence of Rembrandt’s luminous compositions in which Christian tales are transformed into something metaphysical. The subject derives from the Golden Legend of Jacobus de Voraigne, which suggests that the saints’ bodies were cast into a well near the clandestine catacomb vault, seen here in Castiglione’s dramatic rendering. The artist often etched such erudite subjects to advertise his art and prowess as a painter-philosopher to the literati in Rome and those on the grand tour.

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Prints and Drawings

Artist

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione

Title

The Bodies of Saints Peter and Paul Hidden in the Catacombs

Origin

Italy

Date

1647–1651

Medium

Etching and drypoint in black on ivory laid paper

Dimensions

288 x 205 mm (image); 289 x 206 mm (plate); 300 x 208 mm (sheet)

Credit Line

Restricted Gift of Mary A. Young

Reference Number

2014.15

Extended information about this artwork

Object information is a work in progress and may be updated as new research findings emerge. To help improve this record, please email .

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