Nanni di Bartolo, Bearded Prophet

Nanni di Bartolo, called "il Rosso" - Giuliano di Giovanni da Poggibonsi
Original location
Giotto's bell tower, east side, niche
White marble
Height: 190,5 cm; Width: 69,5 cm; Depth: 45,3 cm;

This statue in white marble, worked in the round and larger than life, was originally placed on the east side of Giotto's bell tower, in the second niche from the left at the third level. It is a work attributed to Giuliano da Poggibonsi and to Giovanni “Nanni” di Bartolo (also known as “il Rosso”), Donatello's youthful companion in sculpture, who made it in the second decade of the 15th century. The figure represents an anonymous prophet of mature age. Dressed in an ample tunic held at the waist by a knot, he is caught in the gesture of slightly twisting his torso, as he turns upward to his right, intending to point towards the heavens. The thin face, framed by curly hair and beard (source of the name "Bearded Prophet"), is marked by an ecstatic expression: the eyes are wide open, the pupils (we could imagine) are turned towards the sky, and the mouth is half-open, perhaps in the act of prophesying.

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