COSTA, Lorenzo the Elder
(b. ca. 1460, Ferrara, d. 1535, Mantova)

Legend of Sts Cecilia and Valerian, Scene 9

Oratory of St Cecilia, San Giacomo Maggiore, Bologna

Scene 9 of the Cecilia cycle in the Oratory of St Cecilia, painted by Lorenzo Costa, depicts Cecilia giving away her possessions. Although wounded in the neck three times by the henchman's sword, Cecilia did not die immediately. In the intervening three days she gave away everything she owned and entrusted all those she had converted to Pope Urban's care. Scene 9, in which she distributes her money to the poor, shows her seemingly unhurt. Next to her stands the pope, and around the two are the poor and needy.

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