The Crucifixion of Saint Peter

Caravaggio, The Crucifixion of Saint Peter, circa 1600. Oil on canvas,  Basilica Santa Maria del Popolo Parish, Rome.

In the Cerasi Chapel, a side chapel of Santa Maria del Popolo in Rome, The Crucifixion of Saint Peter hangs directly across from Paul’s Conversion. Viewed from the side, Caravaggio’s paintings direct your eye to Carracci’s The Assumption of Mary, which also hangs in the chapel. Caravaggio uses dramatic lighting and body positioning to draw the viewer into the story, one of the key goals of Counter-Reformation art.


Caravaggio, The Crucifixion of Saint Peter. Oil on canvas, circa 1600. Église Sainte-Marie-du-Peuple, Rome.

A person deemed holy by a religious tradition, especially in Roman Catholicism.

Changing one's beliefs and self-identity from one religion to another.

The Roman Catholic response to the Protestant Reformation's emphasis on scripture over ritual, works, and hierarchy.

A sixteenth-century movement in Europe that questioned the authority of the Roman Catholic Church.

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