Saint Martin and the Beggar

Attributed to Vittore Carpaccio Italian

Not on view

This small study appears to have been preparatory for an altarpiece in the Zara Cathedral, which Carpaccio probably undertook in 1493; although the drawing omits the landscape in the painting, it represents many other details of similar design. The subject is based on an episode from the life of Saint Martin of Tours (ca. 315-397 A.D.), as told in Jacobus de Voragine's 'Golden Legend.' The saint, a young soldier in the Roman army, is seen here on horseback, in the act of cutting off a piece from his cloak with his sword to clothe the beggar standing by his side toward the center. Vittore Carpaccio was the leading painter of late fifteenth-century Venice, along with Giovanni and Gentile Bellini.

Saint Martin and the Beggar, Attributed to Vittore Carpaccio (Italian, Venice 1460/66?–1525/26 Venice), Pen and gray ink, brush and gray wash, over faint traces of black chalk

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.