Portrait of Agostino Barbarigo

Portrait of Agostino Barbarigo

after c. 1571

Paolo Veronese

(Italian, 1528-1588)

Oil on canvas

Framed: 136.2 x 136.2 x 12.1 cm (53 5/8 x 53 5/8 x 4 3/4 in.); Unframed: 102.2 x 104.2 cm (40 1/4 x 41 in.)

Gift of Mrs. L. E. Holden, Mr. and Mrs. Guerdon S. Holden, and the L. E. Holden Fund 1928.16


Barbarigo served as second in command of the Venetian naval forces during the Battle of Lepanto, fighting against the Ottoman Empire on October 7, 1571. During the skirmish, Barbarigo was slain by a Turkish arrow, which he holds in the portrait.

Barbarigo’s identity is defined by his military prowess. In the 1500s, Venetian military portraits often portrayed the sitter in armor in a pose typical of a Roman emperor, creating a link to the valor and might of ancient armies.

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