Saint Jerome in a Rocky Landscape

Image credit: The National Gallery, London

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This small picture shows two episodes from the life of Saint Jerome. At the front, the saint sits under a lean-to shelter and removes a large thorn from a lion’s paw. In gratitude the lion remained with him in the wilderness and after he went back to monastic life. On a rocky platform behind, the saint appears again, dressed as a cardinal, with two men leading camels and a donkey. The men are merchants who stole the monastery’s donkey; the lion recovered it.

The painting has been cut down on the right. It originally looked like a painting in Wuppertal (Von der Heydt Museum) which includes other incidents from the story. There are several variants of this subject, one of which, now in the Prado, Madrid, is signed by Joachim Patinir. It is possible that all were being worked on at much the same time in his workshop.

The National Gallery, London



Saint Jerome in a Rocky Landscape


probably 1515-24


Oil on oak


H 36.2 x W 34.3 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Bequeathed by Mrs Henry Oppenheimer, 1936

Work type



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The National Gallery, London

Trafalgar Square, London, Greater London WC2N 5DN England

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