This painting is first recorded in an inventory of June 1627 of the Palazzo Barberini, Rome. It was probably painted not long before for Pope Urban VIII or a member of his family.
Saint Andrew is shown with his symbols of a book and a fish, referring to his activity as a fisherman, and Saint Thomas has a carpenter's square. The saints engage in lively dialogue, with the prominent hand of Saint Andrew gesturing outside the painting.
In the Barberini Collection Bernini's painting was paired with Andrea Sacchi's 'Saints Anthony Abbot and Francis of Assisi'.