Jacopo Tintoretto, St. Roch Heals the Plague-Stricken
Oil on canvas
Church of St. Roch, Venice, Italy
The saint wears the mantle seen in many of his portraits. Long and narrow, the room pictured here resembles one of the "galleries" of the Lazzaretto Vecchio, where Venice's plague victims were housed during the 16th century. But the artist kept the point of view low so that the windows would not be in evidence and the scene could be believably dark. Windows provided cross-ventilation to reduce the odors that were thought to contribute to the disease.
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Photographed at the church by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.