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The Denial of Saint Peter

A work made of oil on canvas.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of oil on canvas.




Hendrick ter Brugghen
Dutch, 1588-1629

About this artwork

For this depiction of Peter denying that he is a follower of Jesus (seen under arrest in the background at right), Utrecht artist Hendrick ter Brugghen embraced the strong contrast of light and shadow and emotional urgency popularized by Italian painter Caravaggio. The dancing sparks of the fire illuminate the servant’s condemnatory finger and shroud the fearful saint in shadow, underlining the Dutch taste for naturalistic treatments of lighting in the 17th century.


On View, Gallery 213


Painting and Sculpture of Europe


Hendrick Terbrugghen


The Denial of Saint Peter


Netherlands (Artist's nationality:)

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.



Oil on canvas


132.3 × 178 cm (51 5/8 × 69 5/8 in.)

Credit Line

Charles H. and Mary F. S. Worcester Collection

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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