Souls in Purgatory, Looking Up at the Wounds of Christ and at the Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart

Image credit: Wellcome Collection

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Top, the eye of God. Below, two hearts: left, the Sacred Heart of Jesus, surrounded by flames, bedecked with the crown of thorns, and surmounted by the Cross; right, the Immaculate Heart of the Virgin, surrounded by flames, pierced with swords representing the Seven Sorrows of the Virgin, and surmounted by lilies. Above the hearts, the hands of Christ crucified; below the hearts, the wound in the side of Christ and the feet of Christ crucified. The pains suffered by Christ on the cross, and the sorrows suffered by the Virgin as she contemplated the pains of Christ, are brought before the eyes of the pious to comfort them when they themselves are afflicted by bodily suffering. An example of such suffering is shown at the bottom; the souls of sinful humans in purgatory, seeking to escape the fires of punishment and to escape into paradise.

Wellcome Collection



Souls in Purgatory, Looking Up at the Wounds of Christ and at the Sacred Heart and the Immaculate Heart


18th C


watercolour on vellum


H 10.1 x W 7.2 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

presumed to be part of the collection formed by Henry S. Wellcome

Work type



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Wellcome Collection

183 Euston Road, London, Greater London NW1 2BE England

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