Workshop of Andrea Pisano, The christian Virtues

Workshop of Andrea Pisano
Original location
Giotto's bell tower, south side, second register
Marble, ceramic, enamel pigments
Sculpture, modelling, enamelling
Height: 86 cm ca.; Width: 63 cm ca.; Thickness: 12 cm ca.;

Marble reliefs depicting the Theological Virtues: Faith, Charity, Hope and the Cardinal Virtues: Prudence, Justice, Temperance and Fortitude. From the workshop of Andrea Pisano (1343-1360). This side of the Campanile is dedicated to the virtues sustaining Christian life. The Theological Virtues which determine our belief in God in whom we repose our trust, and the Cardinal Virtues, regulating our conduct towards others. The virtues are symbolically portrayed as female figures holding objects indicating their roles. Faith holds a Cross and a chalice, symbols of Christian faith. Charity bears a heart and a cornucopia filled with fruits, signs of God's love and the gifts He bestows with such abundance. Hope prays to heaven, eager to achieve worthy fulfillment in life, symbolized by the crown. Prudence holds a mirror to see behind her in one hand, and a snake, symbol of wisdom and prudence, in the other, because Christ in the Gospel urges men to be wise as serpents. Justice has a scale and sword, symbols of separation between good and bad. Temperance serves to moderate the pleasures of the senses, and is therefore symbolically shown watering the wine. Fortitude has a lion's pelt and a club in homage to Hercules, the mythological hero of moral strength, who killed the Nemean lion with his club and made a cloak with its pelt. She also bears a shield, symbolizing spiritual defense and fortitude. 

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Galleria del Campanile