I am grateful to Dr Martina Fleischer for facilitating my research and discussing the Vienna panel with me. Research for this article was assisted by grants from the University of Sydney.
Plague in the city: identifying the subject of Giovanni di Paolo's Vienna Miracle of Saint Nicholas of Tolentino
Article first published online: 8 OCT 2012
© 2012 The Author. Renaissance Studies © 2012 The Society for Renaissance Studies, Blackwell Publishing Ltd
How to Cite
Marshall, L. (2012), Plague in the city: identifying the subject of Giovanni di Paolo's Vienna Miracle of Saint Nicholas of Tolentino. Renaissance Studies. doi: 10.1111/j.1477-4658.2012.00846.x
- Article first published online: 8 OCT 2012
- University of Sydney
- Giovanni di Paolo;
- Vienna Akademie
This article aims to resolve scholarly confusion regarding the subject of a panel by Sienese artist Giovanni di Paolo now in Vienna (Akademie der bildenden Kunst). The picture shows a posthumous miracle of the recently canonized Augustinian friar and famous miracle worker Nicholas of Tolentino (d. 1305, canonized 1446), who is shown hovering in the sky above a city. Despite agreement on the reconstruction of the original altarpiece to which this narrative once belonged, art historians remain divided over the identity of the represented miracle. My study re-examines the visual data to refute the most common readings of the panel as a resurrection and argues for acceptance of Bernard Berenson's original identification of the scene as Nicholas saving a town from plague.