The Temptation of Saint Anthony Abbot Artist: Master of the Osservanza Triptych (Italian, active ca. 1430–ca.1450)

ca. 1435–40

European Art

On view, 2nd floor, European Art

One of the most admired narrative series in fifteenth-century Sienese painting comprises eight panels illustrating the legend of Saint Anthony Abbot, generally attributed to an anonymous artist known only as the Master of the Osservanza. Originally part of an altarpiece or large tabernacle, the series includes works now divided among museums in New York, Washington, D.C., and Berlin, in addition to the two panels in the Gallery’s collection. In this panel, Saint Anthony, retiring to a life of abstinence and isolation, is beset with temptations of the flesh. The wings of the seductress at the right indentify her as a dissembling devil.


Tempera on panel


15 1/8 × 15 7/8 × 1/2 in. (38.4 × 40.4 × 1.2 cm)

Credit Line

University Purchase from James Jackson Jarves

Accession Number



15th century


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



James Jackson Jarves Collection, Florence.Potentially purchased by Jarves in Macerata in the 1850s when the Giambattista Caccialupi collection was being broken up and sold (see Boskovits and Brown 2003, p. 493 note 33).
  • Susan B. Matheson, Art for Yale: A History of the Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 2001), 48, 50, fig. 41a
  • Burton B. Fredericksen and Federico Zeri, Census of Pre-Nineteenth-Century Italian Paintings in North American Public Collections (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1972), 599
  • Mrs. Francis Steegmuller, The Two Lives of James Jackson Jarves (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1951), 297, fig. 10
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

religious art

Technical metadata and APIs


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