Wilhelm Borremans, St. Apollonia

Church of Santa Maria dell'Ammiraglio

This is one of a number of head-and-shoulders portraits of female saints that Borremans painted for the vault at the entrance to the nave (Santoro, 52-55). St. Apollonia is shown with a tooth in the tooth-extractor that is her attribute. Although a martyr, she is not shown with a palm branch. The apparent bulge in her right cheek may refer to her being the patron saint of those with toothaches.

Borremans apparently favored blondes. His portraits on the vault of Saints Euphemia and Rosalia are also blonde.

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Photographed at the church by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.