Sacra Conversazione

Bergognone (Ambrogio da Fossano)c. 1485

Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana

Veneranda Biblioteca Ambrosiana

Literally a “holy conversation”, a Sacra Conversazione is a representation of the Virgin and Child enthroned, surrounded by a number of saints, as we see in this majestic panel, which was originally in the church of Sant’Epifanio in Pavia. It was later taken to the more famous San Pietro in Ciel d’Oro, also in Pavia, and eventually came to the Ambrosiana in 1777. The Virgin is seated on a high throne with the Child on her lap, blessing the donor, who commissioned the painting and who is seen kneeling with cap in hand as a mark of respect: this is the pronotary Gerolamo Calagrani, shown in ecclesiastic attire. Behind him, on the left there are Saint Jerome, Saint Augustine, Saint Ambrose and Saint Gregory the Great. The second group of saints form a crowd on the right: Saint Epiphanius, Saint Liberata, Saint Luminosa and Saint Speciosa.

Show lessRead more


  • Title: Sacra Conversazione
  • Creator: Bergognone (Ambrogio da Fossano)
  • Date Created: c. 1485
  • Physical Dimensions: 242 x 182 cm
  • Type: Painting
  • Medium: Tempera and oil