Saint Michael and the Dragon
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Master of Sir John Fastolf
French or English, France or England, about 1430 - 1440
Tempera colors, gold leaf, and ink on parchment
4 3/4 x 3 5/8 in.
MS. 5, FOL. 27V

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In this dynamic scene, the archangel Saint Michael tramples a black, winged beast and spears it with a lance. In the Book of Revelation, Michael is described as leading a battle in heaven against the devil, represented here by the defeated dragon. This popular military saint, shown dressed in armor, was widely revered in the Middle Ages as the weigher of souls at the Last Judgment and for his power to rescue individuals from hell.