Raphael's Portrait Leo X with Cardinals Guilio de' Medici

916 words 4 pages
In Nelson Minnich's religious interpretation of Raphael's famous portrait of Pope Leo X, Minnich first begins with the very basics of the portrait; what is contained within its canvas and why it is there. From small clues such as these, he is able to lay the foundation for which theories and conclusions can be based. He first points out the location of the figures in the painting. Minnich believes that they are in a large room, seated before a green cloth on the wall, or cloth of honor. There is some speculation, however, as to exactly where this room is located. Several theorists, as well as he, believe that the location is a room in the Vatican, perhaps the library. He points out that there is reflection of a window in several objects …show more content…
The pope and his relatives would have to have known far in advance that they could not make the occasion and Luigi de'Rossi was actually recognized as being present the day of the wedding. He says that occasional pieces are not usually so planned out, but does however, mention that a lot would be explained had Raphael begun painting a portrait and then suddenly attempted to switch it into a wedding gift and add the two cardinals. Not fully committed to a purpose, Minnich takes a quick look at the religious meaning behind the portrait. He mentions that Josephine Jungie has the most persuasive theory on the painting. She believes that the bible represents the stage of the Holy spirit, the bell represents the new age, and that Leo looking to the left represents his looking to the arrival of the new age, and thinking about his own appointment as an Angelican Pastor who will lead the Church in the final age. Minnich points out that this is persuasive because Leo was attempting to take on the roles that an Angelican leader would, yet points out the Jungie failed to find reason for the two cardinals in the portrait. He closes with admitting to readers that no one will ever really know Raphael's true intentions behind this famous painting. All we have is historical facts, symbols, ideas, and of course opinions to make up the reason for Pope Leo X's portrait with Cardinals Luigi de'Rossi and Guilio de'Medici.

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