Vicente Carducho: The Humility of Count William II of Nevers (1632)

(Museo del Prado, Madrid, Spain)

A painting by the Italian artist Vicente Carducho (c. 1576-1638). This piece is part of a set of 54 paintings dedicated to the founding of the Carthusian Order by Saint Bruno of Cologne and its leading members. The set was commissioned by father Juan de Baeza for the Santa María de El Paular Monastery, a former Carthusian monastery near Madrid. This painting is dedicated to count William II of Nevers (1083-1148). William II joined the disastrous Crusade of 1101 which was virtually wiped out. A year before his death William joined the Carthusian order in the Grande Chartreuse, where he sought to erase any trace of his previous existence by carrying out the most humble tasks. The piece shows William's son visiting the monastery where they are astonished by William's laborious life there. Painting from 1632.