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The Sudarium of Saint Veronica

A work made of engraving in black on buff laid paper.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of engraving in black on buff laid paper.




Claude Mellan
French, 1598-1688

About this artwork

This virtuoso print replicates the cloth that Saint Veronica used to wipe Christ’s face on the way to his death. The cloth is called a sudarium, a contact relic containing the print-like impression of the savior’s face. Claude Mellan engraved Christ’s portrait in one seemingly unbroken line; the spiral from the center of his nose swirls outward to delineate the fabric. The artist’s way of approaching the swelling engraved line, produced with increased burin pressure, lends the image an abstract quality.


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Prints and Drawings


Claude Mellan


The Sudarium of Saint Veronica


France (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.

Made 1649


Engraving in black on buff laid paper


Plate: 43.3 × 31.6 cm (17 1/16 × 12 1/2 in.); Sheet: 43.6 × 31.9 cm (17 3/16 × 12 9/16 in.)

Credit Line

The Charles Deering 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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