Ángel Zárraga, Votive Offering [Saint Sebastian], 1912⁠⠀

St Sebastian was a Roman saint who lived and died in the 3rd Century AD. He rose through military ranks to become a captain of the Praetorian Guards under the emperors Diocletian and Maximian, who ran a campaign of Christian persecution. When Sebastian was found to be Christian, he was tied to a post, shot with arrows, and left for dead looking like a sea urchin. St Irene of Rome was charged with the task of cleaning up the body but she found St Sebastian still alive, so she nursed him back to health. Once better, Sebastian decided to warn the emperor Diocletian about his wicked ways and waited in a staircase for the emperor to come by. At first the emperor was shocked at being chewed out, but then decided to have Sebastian clubbed to death.⁠⠀
Mexican artist Zárraga has given us a beautiful St Sebastian with a praying St Irene in Art Nouveau-style garb. The inscription in the bottom corner reads thusly: “Lord, I do not know how to celebrate you as a poet does in complicated verses, but Lord accept this rough and humble work that I have made with my mortal hands. Ángel Zárraga”⁠

Leave a Reply