Inventory number
P02650
Author
Goya y Lucientes, Francisco de
Title
Saint Justa and Saint Rufina
Chronology
1817
Technique
Oil
Support
Panel
Dimensions
45 cm x 29 cm
School
Spanish
Theme
Religion
On display
Yes
Provenance
Collection of Pablo Bosch, Madrid; Prado Museum, 1916

The patron saints of Seville were potters. They were martyred for having refused to worship an image of the goddess, Venus. They are depicted with their clay pots, or alcazarras, and the palms of martyrdom, while a lion licks saint Rufina's foot. Seville Cathedral, with the Giralda tower, is visible in the background. This tower remained standing after the earthquake of 1504, thanks to the saints' miraculous intervention.

This is one of various sketches made by the painter for the painting on the same subject that is part of the main altarpiece at the Sacristy of los Cálices in Seville Cathedral. The Chapter commissioned this work in 1817 by way of Agustín Ceán Bermúdez, an erudite writer on art and friend of Goya. He set the guidelines for the representation of this subject. Goya traveled to Seville to see where the painting was to hang, and to study the traditional iconography of that city's patron saints.

 
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