LORENZETTI, Ambrogio
(b. ca. 1290, Siena, d. 1348, Siena)

Scenes of the Life of St Nicholas

c. 1332
Tempera on wood
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

In the top scene of the second panel depicting stories of St Nicholas, Nicholas is throwing gold into the house of a man considering prostituting his daughters. The future saint did the same twice more, dowering the girls so they could marry. By way of his Dutch name, this gift-giver turned into Santa Claus.