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Raffaello Santi

Raphael or Raffaello (April 6, 1483 - April 6, 1520), also called Raffaello Sanzio, Raffaello Santi, Raffaello da Urbino or Rafael Sanzio de Urbino, was a painter and architect of the Florentine school in the Italian High Renaissance[?].

His life was described in Giorgio Vasari's Vite. Born in Urbino[?], he studied in Perugia under Pietro Perugino[?]. But after leaving Perugino and moving to Florence he soon adopted the styles of Leonardo and Michelangelo.

Raphael is best known for his Madonnas and Holy families and for his large frescoes in the Vatican Palace. In 1510 indeed, he was called to Rome to decorate the Vatican Stanze (rooms), for Pope Julius II. The best known of these works are the School of Athens and the Disputation on the Blessed Sacrament, two large, arch-shaped frescoes, the first depicting the pagan philosophers of Antiquity grouped around Plato and Aristotle and the second depicting Christian theologians grouped under Christ.

Under Pope Leo X he was chief architect of Saint Peter's Basilica in 1514 and he was named as a sort of supervisor for Roman archaeology research.

He died at the age of 37, on his birthday in Rome and was interred there in the Pantheon, the country's most honored place.


Woman with a veil (La Donna Velata)
Painted 1516
Larger version

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