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Arrival of Saint Ursula at Cologne
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Bernardo Daddi
Italian, about 1333
Tempera and gold leaf on panel
23 13/16 x 24 3/4 in.
70.PB.53

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Three boats approach the German city of Cologne where Saint Ursula, on her way back north after a pilgrimage to Rome, was martyred with the strike of an arrow. Ursula sits under a baldachin in the stern of the foreground boat; two of her virgin companions reach out toward the shore. The middle boat carries Pope Ciriacus and his bishops. More of Ursula's attendants follow in the last boat. Banners depicting the arms of Ursula and Ciriacus fly from the bow of each vessel.

Originally forming the left wing of a triptych with the Crucifixion in the center, this panel was made for the church of Santa Orsola in Florence. The subject, although common in Northern Europe, was rare in Tuscany. Daddi's treatment of the subject is also quite unusual. The panel is filled with surprising, naturalistic details like the frothing river produced by the oars and the boat's advancing prow.