Workshop of Tintoretto
The Martyrdom of Saints Cosmas and Damian
Late 16th or early 17th century
Oil on canvas
Church of San Giorgio Maggiore, Venice
Hanging above the altar in the chapel of Saints Cosmas and Damian
In the upper part of the image an angel extends the palm of martyrdom to Cosmas or Damian. Below the angel, archers try unsuccessfully to shoot the saints with their arrows, which reverse flight and return upon the archers themselves. Stones fly likewise, hurtling back at those who threw them. Below the archers, on the left, are the three brothers of Cosmas and Damian, who will be beheaded along with them. In the lowest part of the painting we see Cosmas or Damian being tied to his cross.
The inscription on the bottom part of the frame reads, OSSA SS. MAR. COSME ET DAMINI IACENT HIC – "The bones of the martyrs Saints Cosmas and Damian lie here."
This image in full resolution
Detail of the angel and palm branch
Detail of the archers
More of Saints Cosmas and Damian
Photographed at San Giorgio Maggiore by Richard Stracke