Prague Minos Guide

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A beggar on a cross

How an artist went mad following his tragic actions
Info text

In the chapel of the Archbishop’s palace at Hradčany stands a painting of Christ on the Cross and this is its sad story. One day the Archbishop commissioned a painting of the Crucifixion from a Wallache artist. The artist worked on the painting intensively but continued to be dissatisfied with the expression on the face of Christ. In exchange for generous alms he persuaded a beggar from the stone bridge to stand as a model for his painting. He tied

the beggar to a cross but he was still unable to capture the right expression of suffering. Suddenly he was seized with vigorous anger and threw his dagger at the beggar. He was stricken and died immediately. The artist began to paint fascinated by the beggar‘s expression of death. When his artistic ecstasy came to an end he realized what he had done and went totally mad. He ran off far-away, no one knows where, with a terribly sick mind.


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