(b. 1445, Firenze, d. 1510, Firenze)

St Augustine in His Cell

Tempera on panel, 41 x 27 cm cm
Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence

The simplification of composition which is so characteristic of Botticelli's later works is also a feature of this small devotional picture which shows St Augustine the scholar. The worn-out quills and crumpled pieces of paper on the floor are signs of his intensive studies. Under the red bishops cloak the saint is wearing the habit of an Augustinian hermit, even though he was never a monk. As a result it is assumed that the painting was produced for a prior of Santo Spirito, the only Augustinian hermit monastery in Florence.