Bartolomeo Carducci was born in Florence, in 1560, and entered the studio of Federico Zuccaro at the age of 18. He worked with his master in Rome, and when the latter went to Spain, in 1585, to paint the frescoes for one of cloisters of the Escorial, Carducci accompanied him and remained in Spain even after his master had returned to Italy, in 1589. This Death of Saint Francis dates from 1593, one year after his marriage to Jerónima Capello, probably when it became clear that he would stay in Spain indefinitely. With a composition of many figures, but arranged with a clarity typical of Florentine painting, the painting entails significant innovations in the unification of colours and the treatment of light from a single source, the candle in the centre. It is above all an innovative painting for the naturalism with which the objects are treated, like the monks’ robes and their hands and feet damaged by time. In this sense, it is a precursor to the attachment to reality that characterised Spanish painting in the early 17th century.