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29th September: 'Saints Michael, Raphael and Gabriel'.
Wednesday 25 Sep 2013 10:51 PM
| Art and Prayer
Three Archangels and Young Tobias, Filippino Lippi, 1477
100cm x 127cm Galleria Sabauda, Turin
The Weekday Missal's account seems a good introduction: St Michael (meaning 'Who is like God') is venerated as captain of the heavenly army, victor over Satan, protector of the church and helper of the sick and dying. St Raphael (meaning God heal's) took care of Tobias on his journey, as described in the book of Tobit and is often associated with the angel of the sheep pool (Jn 5:1-4). He is a patron of the blind, travellers and physicians and nurses. St Gabriel (meaning 'Strength of God') announced both the birth of St John the Baptist (to Zechariah) and of Jesus Christ (to the Blessed Virgin Mary). His greeting at the Annunciation, 'Hail, full of grace,' has become one of the most familiar prayers.
Filippino Lippi was a pupil of Botticelli, hence the grace and delicacy in the rendering of the figures and clothing, so familiar in Botticelli's work. Botticelli was a pupil of Filippo Lippi (Filippino's father).