Name of Object:
St. Francis Xavier Preaching in Goa
Lisbon's Holy House of mercy / Museum of São Roque
Date of Object:
Artist(s) / Craftsperson(s):
André Reinoso (c.1590, Province of Beira, Portugal–after 1641) and his collaborators
Museum Inventory Number:
Material(s) / Technique(s):
Oil on canvas
H: 104 cm; w: 165 cm
Workshop / Movement:
Naturalistic tenebrism, Iberian painters
Church of São Roque
Type of object:
Period of activity:
Place of production:
The set of 20 paintings portraying the life of St. Francis Xavier (1506–1552) form the back-piece to a large chest-of-drawers in the sacristy of the 16th-century Church of St. Roque, and are the work of the Portuguese proto-Baroque painter André Reinoso and collaborators. Installed in 1619, three years before the official canonisation of St. Francis Xavier on the 12th March 1622, the set of paintings form part of a religious “propaganda” exercise to highlight the life and work of the great Jesuit missionary, which it was hoped, would speed up the process of his canonisation by the Catholic Church. The paintings were inspired by the first Portuguese biography of the saint written by Father João de Lucena (Histórica da Vida do Padre Francisco Xavier, e do que fizerão na Índia os mais religiosos da Companhia de Jesus) published in Lisbon in 1600.
This oil on canvas painting, part of a set of 20, is attributed to the Portuguese proto-Baroque painter André Reinoso (c. 1590-1641). Commissioned by the Society of Jesus for the sacristy of the Jesuit Church of St. Roque, this and other paintings of the set form the back-piece to a large chest-of-drawers installed in 1619, three years before the canonisation of the great missionary of the Far-East, St. Francis Xavier.
Society of Jesus
Santa Casa da Misericórdia de Lisboa / Museum of São Roque
How date and origin were established:
This painting, as well as the other ones that make up the painted cycle dedicated to the life of St. Francis Xavier, was attributed to André Reinoso by the Art Historian, Prof. Vitor Serrão, after a thorough research on Reinoso’s life and his works, in the decade of 1990.
How Object was obtained:
Church of São Roque, Sacristy (Lisbon), the work commissioned by the Society of Jesus to the painter André Reinoso and his collaborators.
Lucena, J., Historia da Vida do Padre Francisco Xavier (…), 1600, 2 vols, Lisbon, 1959.
Citation of this web page:
Antonio Meira Marques Henriques "St. Francis Xavier Preaching in Goa" in "Discover Baroque Art", Museum With No Frontiers, 2020. http://www.discoverbaroqueart.org/database_item.php?id=object;BAR;pt;Mus11_A;15;en
Prepared by: Antonio Meira Marques Henriques