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Interior of a Dominican Convent in Madrid

Ferdinand-Victor-Eugène Delacroix, French, 1798 - 1863

Date:
1831

Medium:
Oil on canvas

Dimensions:
51 1/4 x 63 3/4 inches (130.2 x 161.9 cm) Framed: 66 x 78 5/8 x 6 3/8 inches (167.6 x 199.7 x 16.2 cm)

Curatorial Department:
European Painting

Object Location:

* Gallery 299, European Art 1500-1850, second floor

Accession Number:
W1894-1-2

Credit Line:
Purchased with the W. P. Wilstach Fund, 1894

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Label:
The subject of this painting is from a popular nineteenth-century English novel, Charles Maturin's Melmoth the Wanderer, translated into French in 1821. A young man forced into a convent as a child undergoes harrowing trials in order to escape his punitive and corrupt surroundings. Here he is shown being dragged before the bishop of Madrid. The artist depicts a cavernous, vaulted room that is actually based on the interior of the Palace of Justice in Rouen, France. Delacroix's use of this decidedly un-Spanish, secular setting may have been an intentional reference to the oppressive link between civic and religious power, a theme prominent in the novel.


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