Oil on canvas. “ Saint Francis of Assisi ". Italian school, 18th century.

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Oil on canvas. “ Saint Francis of Assisi ". Italian school, 18th century.

Saint Francis of Assisi , standing in front of a skull and contemplating the angels alluding to the purity that anyone aspiring to the priesthood should possess.

The skull and Cruz  also allude to penitence and humility, as does the saint's serge clothing.

Size: 20 x 17 cm.

Saint Francis (Assisi, Italy, 1182 - 1226) was the son of a rich Italian merchant. Baptised as John, he was soon known as "Francesco" (the little Frenchman), because his mother came from that country. His youth was joyful and carefree until the age of twenty-five, when he changed completely and began to dedicate himself to the service of God, practising the Gospel ideal: purity, detachment and joy in peace. Francesco renounced the great inheritance he had received from his parents and decided to live poorly, giving the example of an authentic Christian. He soon had several young disciples, called by the saint "order of the Friars Minor". In 1210, Pope Innocent III granted them the foundation of the new order and encouraged them in their evangelical work. During a retreat on the mountain, Christ appeared to him, and legend has it that rays came out of his wounds, causing Francis various stigmata. He was a legendary figure during his lifetime, considered a living relic. Likewise, his exquisite poetry and his familiarity with nature add the most human accent known in a saint, as can be seen in his "Canticle to the Sun". His iconography is abundant, second only to that of Saint Anthony of Padua.