Skip to main content

Domenichino, The Vision of Saint Jerome

Key facts
Full title The Vision of Saint Jerome
Artist Domenichino
Artist dates 1581 - 1641
Date made before 1603
Medium and support Oil on canvas
Dimensions 51.1 × 39.8 cm
Acquisition credit Holwell Carr Bequest, 1831
Inventory number NG85
Location Room 37
Art route(s) B
Collection Main Collection
Previous owners
The Vision of Saint Jerome

An elderly but muscular man with an impressive beard sits in a rocky landscape. Beside him is a pile of books, on top of which sits a skull wearing a cardinal’s hat. He leans on a second pile, and points to the text of an open volume resting on a rocky ledge. This is the fourth-century scholar and hermit Saint Jerome, who produced the standard Latin translation of the Bible known as the Vulgate.

Jerome was especially important during the Counter-Reformation, when the Catholic Church undertook a series of reforms in response to the Protestant Reformation. In 1546 the Council of Trent, a meeting of the Church’s ruling body, declared the Vulgate the official translation of the Bible. The angel flying down from the top left corner does not relate to a specific incident but shows that Jerome was divinely inspired.

This is the earliest surviving documented picture by Domenichino: it was recorded in the collection of Cardinal Pietro Aldobrandini in 1603.

Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download a low-resolution copy of this image for personal use.

License this image

License and download a high-resolution image for reproductions up to A3 size from the National Gallery Picture Library.

License image
Download low-resolution image

This image is licensed for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons agreement.

Examples of non-commercial use are:

  • Research, private study, or for internal circulation within an educational organisation (such as a school, college or university)
  • Non-profit publications, personal websites, blogs, and social media

The image file is 800 pixels on the longest side.

As a charity, we depend upon the generosity of individuals to ensure the collection continues to engage and inspire. Help keep us free by making a donation today.

Download low-resolution image

You must agree to the Creative Commons terms and conditions to download this image.

Creative Commons Logo