Skip to main content
Saint Dorothy and the Infant Christ
Francesco di Giorgio
/

This little panel, which is also decorated on the reverse, shows Saint Dorothy with Jesus, a toddler, carrying a basket of roses. She caries a stem of roses in bloom and bud and gazes tenderly at the boy. Saint Dorothy was martyred for her faith in the city of Caesarea (in modern-day Turkey), in the fourth century.

According to legend she was mocked by a Roman scribe, named Theophilus, for claiming that in ‘Christ’s garden’ –heaven, in other words – roses always bloomed and apples were always in fruit. Cruelly, moments before her decapitation, he asked if she might then bring him some too. At these words Christ appeared as a small child, carrying a basket of fruit and flowers which he presented to the lawyer. Theophilus in turn converted to Christianity and was also eventually martyred.

The picture was made for private contemplation and its sweetness, soft pinks and lilacs, reflects not only the nature of the story but the fashion in Sienese painting for graceful, decorative images.

Key facts
Artist Francesco di Giorgio
Artist dates 1439 - 1501
Full title Saint Dorothy and the Infant Christ
Date made about 1460
Medium and support Tempera and gold on wood
Dimensions 33.3 x 20.6 cm
Acquisition credit Bought, 1899
Inventory number NG1682
Location in Gallery Room 53
Download image
Download low-resolution image

Download an 800px wide, 72dpi copy of this image.

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.

Yes, I'd like to donate
Or
Download low resolution image

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

Creative Commons Logo