SALVIATI, Cecchino del
(b. 1510, Firenze, d. 1563, Roma)

The Birth of St John the Baptist

Oratorio di San Giovanni Decollato, Rome

This scene is located on the right wall, close to the entrance wall. Salviati executed this scene 13 years later than the Visitation scene in the centre of the same wall. This fresco reveals that he was no longer concerned with including as many figures as could possibly fit in such a scene. Instead, Salviati concentrated on fewer forms - Elizabeth and Zachariah, as well as the dove-bearing maid at the left and the women bathing the child at the right - and even dispensed with the important subject of Zachariah naming John, a subject that he had still included in his early drawing. In the figure of the newborn child, Salviati quotes Michelangelo's Jonah.