Collection: Tears of St. Peter

ARTIST: Museum Religious Art Classics


Artist: Jusepe de Ribera – c. 1612 – 1613

Spanish by birth, Ribera moved to Italy when he was fourteen or fifteen. He soon became one of the most important and influential followers of Caravaggio’s style. His art was fundamental in the development of painting in Europe in the seventeenth century. This early work is first mentioned in 1644 in the collection of Cardinal Benedetto Monaldi Baldeschi in Rome.

Saint Peter, his eyes red with tears and his hands clasped in prayer, is shown following his denial of Christ. The shedding of tears of repentance was celebrated in poetry and song and was key to devotional practice.

His feast day is June 29.