(active 1390, d. 1408, Valencia)

Three Scenes from the Life of St Dominic

c. 1400
Oil on canvas, 88 x 172 cm
Museu de Belles Arts, Valencia

The first scene in the painting depicts the birth of St Dominic. The story is told that before his birth his barren mother made a pilgrimage to the Abbey at Silos, and dreamt that a dog leapt from her womb carrying a flaming torch in its mouth, and "seemed to set the earth on fire." This story is likely to have emerged when his order became known, after his name, as the Dominican order, Dominicanus in Latin and a play on words interpreted as Domini canis: "Dog of the Lord."

The second scene shows the resurrection of Napoleone Orsini;. while the third scene depicts the burning of the heretical books.

© Web Gallery of Art, created by Emil Krén and Daniel Marx.