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The Fresco

The Fresco, depicting St. Patrick’s Purgatory at Lough Derg and believed to have been painted by an artist from Siena in 1346, was discovered only recently on a convent wall in Todi, in central Italy.

The work shows the figure of St. Patrick and the hellish voids of the Purgatory cave from a medieval perspective. Here the Patrician tradition and the tales of Knight Owein’s experiences in the Purgatory are adapted for a wider following while, at the same time, retaining the familiar imagery of salvation and damnation. Clearly the fresco reflects the influence that accounts of St. Patrick’s Purgatory had on Christian sensibilities and the arts generally at that time in Italy.

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