PIERO DELLA FRANCESCA
(b. 1416, Borgo San Sepolcro, d. 1492, Borgo San Sepolcro)

7a. Finding of the True Cross

1452-66
Fresco
San Francesco, Arezzo

Here we see Helena in a mountainous landscape, a view of the city of Arezzo in the background, as one cross is being lifted up out of the ground. Judas, wearing a red hat, stands next to her, pointing at the other cross just coming to light. One man in the foreground is still standing waist-deep in the hole; three others, carrying axes and shovels, stand next to the first cross to have emerged. According to the legend, Helena has all three of the excavated crosses brought to the city, for she has no idea which of them is the cross of Christ.




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