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Key facts
Full title The Crucified Christ with the Virgin Mary, Saints and Angels (The Mond Crucifixion)
Artist Raphael
Artist dates 1483 - 1520
Date made about 1502-3
Medium and support Oil on poplar
Dimensions 283.3 x 167.3 cm
Inscription summary Signed; Inscribed
Acquisition credit Mond Bequest, 1924
Inventory number NG3943
Location Room 61
Art route(s) A
Collection Main Collection
The Mond Crucifixion

This altarpiece is one of Raphael’s earliest works. It was commissioned by the wool merchant and banker Domenico Gavari for his burial chapel dedicated to Saint Jerome in the church of S. Domenico in Città di Castello, Umbria.

Christ’s body is suspended from the Cross. Two angels balance on delicate slivers of cloud on either side, collecting the blood that drips from his wounds in golden chalices reminiscent of those in which wine would be served during Mass at the altar below.

The sun and moon appear simultaneously in the sky, symbolising the eclipse that coincided with Christ’s death. Saint Jerome and Mary Magdalene appear at the foot of the Cross and gaze up at Christ’s body with reverence and pity. The Virgin, robed in purplish black to denote mourning, stands to the left of the Cross and John the Evangelist to the right. They both look at the viewer and wring their hands in grief.

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