Pontormo's San Quintino

Sansepolcro’s Civic Museum hosts masterpiece

Via Niccolò Aggiunti, 65

‘San Quintino’ was painted by Jacopo Carucci—better known as Pontormo. It came from the church of Maddalena dei Minori Osservanti, yet in 1886, it was already part of the Palazzo Comunale’s collection. This famed canvas represents the martyrdom of a noble Roman citizen who converted to Christianity; this version of the story was taken from the famous Golden Legend by Jacopo da Varagine.

The religious feeling of the image is less prominent than its vague and mysterious sense of anxiety. This feeling is enhanced by Pontormo’s evocative chromatic choices and the sensual beauty of the young man. He exposes his tortured body, almost grateful for his suffering as it will lead to heavenly glory.

An introduction to the historical town at the foot of the Apennines
Legend has it that Sansepolcro’s origins can be traced back to two pilgrim saints, Arcano and Egidio. While returning from the Holy Land, they stopped in this valley and, thanks to a divine sign, they decided to stay and build a small chapel there to host the Holy Relics they’d brought from Jerusalem. HISTORY Between 1300 and 1500, Sansepolcro experienced an age of maximum splendor. ...