Large statue (1,13m high), sculpted in the round, representing Saint Anthony of Padua carrying the Child on his left arm.
Born in Lisbon in 1195, he joined Saint Francis and taught in Bologna. He became an excellent preacher in Italy, France and Spain, probably the greatest that the Middle Ages knew. Crowds flocked to hear him preach poverty and penance.
From the 15th century onwards, and especially from the 16th century, the cult of Saint Anthony, which had previously been located in Padua, took on an extraordinary importance. Portugal made him its national saint and exported him to all regions of the world. He became the intercessor par excellence from the 17th century onwards.
The Child Jesus became his favourite attribute.
Very beautiful and original polychromy, with gold leaf. The eyes are in sulphur. The right hand of the saint is missing, as well as three fingers of the Child’s right hand. The base is cracked.
Portugal or Goa, but more likely Mexico. 17th c.