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Imitating Perugino

After his father's death, Raphael went to Perugia, home of the leading artist of central Italy, Perugino. Vasari suggested that Raphael might have become Perugino's apprentice, but there is no evidence that this was the case.

Detail from Perugino, The Virgin and Child with Saints Jerome and Francis, probably about 1507-15 

Whatever the relationship, Raphael certainly learned a great deal from him and came to imitate his style so accurately that their paintings could not be easily distinguished.

Pope Leo X said that it was only upon seeing Michelangelo's work that Raphael was prompted to move beyond the style of Perugino.

Next: Designing with Pintoricchio