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Caritas Romana Giusto le Court


Giusto le Court Ypres, 1627 – Venice, 1679

Culture Italian
Date second half of the 17th century
Object type sculpture
Medium, technique marble

250 × 92 × 71 cm, 1500 kg
with base: 142 × 122 × 107 cm

Inventory number 2004.1
Collection Sculpture
On view Museum of Fine Arts, Ground Floor, Marble Hall

The monumental composition Caritas Romana (Latin for ’Roman Charity’) is a rendering of an ancient legend in which Cimon, sentenced to death by starvation, feeds on the milk of his daughter, Pero. This theme was particularly popular in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Christian art, as one of the picture types depicting the so-called Works of Mercy. The Flemish-born Giusto le Court settled in Venice around 1655, and this statue originates from the Venetian palace Ca’ Sagredo. According to written sources from the eighteenth century, the work stood at the entrance to the magnificent edifice on the Canal Grande. It is not known when the sculpture arrived at itslater home in Hungary, in the garden of the Almássy–Andrássy Palace in Budapest (constructed in 1877), where an identical replica still stands today.

This record is subject to revision due to ongoing research.

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