Saint Thomas of Villanueva Giving Alms to the Poor

Saint Thomas of Villanueva Giving Alms to the Poor
Bartolomé-Esteban Murillo (Spanish, 1617-1682)
Oil on canvas 
52-1/8 x 30 in. (132.4 x 76.2 cm) 
Credit Line:
The Norton Simon Foundation 
Accession Number:
© The Norton Simon Foundation 
On View

Long before his canonization, Augustinian friar St. Thomas de Villanueva (1488-1555), was venerated for his many acts of charity dating back to his childhood. This painting formed part of an altarpiece illustrating scenes from the life of the saint. It was commissioned by the monastery of Saint Augustine in Seville.

The decade of the 1670s was a most creative period for Murillo. His paintings, including "St. Thomas of Villanueva," were executed in a manner that has been described as the "vaporous style." The brushwork is feathery, the pigment thin and the coloration cool and light.


Commissioned August 30, 1664 by the Capuchin Monastery of St. Augustin for the Cavalieri Chapel dedicated to St. Thomas Villanueva, Seville.
King Louis Philippe, Galerie Espagnole, Paris, by 1838 (sale, London, Christie's, 21 May 1853, lot 498 for gs. 710 to);
Graves, for[?];
Thomas Baring (uncle of Lord Northbrook), by descent to;
Northbrook collection, London, by 1889, sold sometime between 1919 and 1926.
[Ehrich Gallery, New York, by 1931].
Dr. Philip O. Cole.
Parlex Corporation, New York.
[Frederick Mont, New York, sold 7 November 1972 to];
The Norton Simon Foundation.

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