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Portrait of Pope Pius V

Bartolomeo Passerotti

Portrait of Pope Pius V

Bartolomeo Passerotti
  • Date: c.1566
  • Style: Mannerism (Late Renaissance)
  • Genre: portrait
  • Media: canvas, oil
  • Dimensions: 129 x 94.5 cm
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The aging, enthroned pope turns toward the viewer while making the sign of blessing with his right hand. Pius V (1566-1572) belonged to the Ghislieri family, and on the top of the back of the throne is his family's coat of arms crowned by the papal tiara and the keys of St. Peter, a symbol of the papacy's descent from Christ's apostle. The identifying inscription below is a later addition. Passerotti worked in the mannerist style, which is characterized by strikingly elongated proportions. The pope's bony appearance reveals both his age and the artist's knowledge of human anatomy.

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