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Giotto and his works in Padua

John Ruskin

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Giotto was not indeed one of the most accomplished painters, but he was one of the greatest men, who ever lived. He was the first master of his time, in architecture as well as in painting; he was the friend of Dante, and the undisputed interpreter of religious truth, by means of painting, over the whole of Italy. The works of such a man may not be the best to set before children in order to teach them drawing; but they assuredly should be studied with the greatest care by all who are interested in the history of the human mind.

One point more remains to be noticed respecting him. As far as I am aware, he never painted profane subjects. All his important existing works are exclusively devoted to the illustration of Christianity. This was not a result of his own peculiar feeling or determination; it was a necessity of the period. Giotto appears to have considered himself simply as a workman, at the command of any employer, for any kind of work, however humble. &q. . . Read More

Community Reviews

For Proust geeks or art freaks, this classic text from the erudite John Ruskin talks of the magnificent frescos left in the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua by the 13th C master, Giotto. Proust spent lots of pages fauning over these frescos which he discovered on his trip to the Veneto and in particular th