Scholars have tentatively attributed this colossal three-quarter figure of Saint Mark the Evangelist to the Italian artist Giuseppe Vermiglio, whose oeuvre has only recently been the focus of study. Vermiglio was based in Milan and Mantua and, in the early years of the seventeenth century, in Rome, where he drew the ire of the authorities for owning an unlicensed sword and being involved in fights with other artists. This imposing figure of the Evangelist focuses on a moment of divine inspiration, in which Saint Mark pauses in the writing of his gospel and thoughtfully glances to the heavens, while his attribute, the lion, is peacefully asleep.
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