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Caravaggio - Crucifixion of St. Peter

 

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The Crucifixion of Saint Peter (Italian: Crocifissione di san Pietro; 1601) is a work by Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, painted for the Cerasi Chapel of Santa Maria del Popolo in Rome. Across the chapel is a second Caravaggio work depicting the The Conversion of Saint Paul on the Road to Damascus (1601). On the altar between the two is an Assumption of the Virgin Mary by Annibale Carracci. The painting depicts the martyrdom of St. Peter by crucifixion — Peter asked that his cross be inverted so as not to imitate his God, Jesus Christ, hence he is depicted upside - down. The large canvas shows Ancient Romans, their faces shielded, struggling to erect the cross of the elderly but muscular apostle. Peter is heavier than his aged body would suggest, and his lifting requires the efforts of three men, as if the crime they perpetrate already weighs on them.