Pilgrims Arriving at Rome during the Jubilee

Claude Bonnefond French

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 806

"The Holy Year is on; every day one meets pilgrims in groups or singly who have come to put the [holy] water to their mouths." So wrote Bonnefond’s contemporary, the painter Jean-Victor Schnetz, to describe the presence in Rome of Catholic pilgrims seeking indulgences, all of them dressed in their traditional native costumes. The scallop shells affixed to the garments of these figures, a symbol of baptism, are attributes of the Apostle James the Greater: perhaps they are veterans of a pilgrimage to the saint’s reputed burial place, the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela in Spain.

Pilgrims Arriving at Rome during the Jubilee, Claude Bonnefond (French, Lyons 1796–1860 Lyons), Oil on canvas

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