POUSSIN, Nicolas
(b. 1594, Les Andelys, d. 1665, Roma)

The Seven Sacraments I: Baptism (detail)

Oil on canvas
National Gallery of Art, Washington

Poussin completed this composition - the last in the first series - after his arrival in Paris. Baptism uses perhaps the brightest palette in the cycle. Examining this series as a whole, it is evident that Poussin has not executed the individual parts in a common style: they were produced over too protracted a period for this, and since Poussin delivered each canvas to his client as soon as it was finished, he was unable to match the following composition to the previous one.

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