A martyr Saint, probably St.Lawrence

WAG 2803


St Lawrence was a Christian priest in 3rd-century Rome who is said to have been burned alive for his faith. The outline of an arch in the background suggests that this is a fragment of a larger panelled artwork. It was probably cut up in the early 19th century for sale to a collector. Rosselli was one of the painters called by the Pope in 1481 to decorate the Sistine Chapel along with Sandro Botticelli, Pietro Perugino and Domenico Ghirlandaio. This is one of the artworks presented by the Liverpool Royal Institution. Liverpool’s economic development grew directly from Britain’s involvement with transatlantic slavery: the kidnapping, enslavement and forced migration of people from West Africa to the Americas and many to the Caribbean. Many members of the Royal Institution made their fortunes directly through the trade or indirectly through the wider economy. This wealth was largely how they were able to bring rare art and treasures, such as this, to the city.