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Fyodor Bruni (1801-1875)  Saint Cecilia  Oil on canvas, 1825  164x124 cm  The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia
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Title: Saint Cecilia
Description:
Fyodor Bruni (1801-1875)
Saint Cecilia
Oil on canvas, 1825
164x124 cm
The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia

Saint Cecilia (Latin: Sancta Caecilia) is the patron saint of musicians and Church music because as she was dying she sang to God..St. Cecilia was an only child. Her feast day is celebrated in the Roman Catholic, Eastern Orthodox, and Eastern Catholic Churches on November 22. She is the most popular Roman saint. She is one of seven women, excluding the Blessed Virgin, commemorated by name in the Canon of the Mass. It was long supposed that she was a noble lady of Rome who, with her husband Valerian(us) and his brother Thateus, suffered martyrdom, c. 230, under the Emperor Alexander Severus.

The research of Giovanni Battista de Rossi, however, appears to confirm the statement of Venantius Fortunatus, Bishop of Poitiers (d. 600), that she perished in Sicily under Emperor Marcus Aurelius between 176 and 180. A church in her honor exists in Rome from about the 5th century, was rebuilt with much splendor by Pope Paschal I around the year 820, and again by Cardinal Paolo Emilio Sfondrati in 1599. It is situated in Trastevere, near the Ripa Grande quay, where in earlier days the Ghetto was located, and is the titulus of a Cardinal Priest, currently Carlo Maria Martini.

The martyrdom of Cecilia is said to have followed that of her husband and his brother by the prefect Turcius Almachius. The officers of the prefect then sought to have Cecilia killed as well. She arranged to have her home preserved as a church before she was arrested. At that time, the officials attempted to kill her by locking her in an overheated sweat-house (bathhouse). However, the attempt failed, and she was to be beheaded. The utioner attempted to decapitate her three times unsuccessfully, at which time he fled. Cecilia survived another three days before succumbing. In the last three days of her life, she opened her eyes, gazed at her family and friends who crowded around her cell, closed them, and never opened them again. The people by her cell knew immediately that she was to become a saint in heaven. She was a friend to all.

The skull of Saint Cecilia is kept as a relic in the cathedral of Torcello.

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Fyodor Bruni (1801-1875)  The Virgin and Child  Oil on canvas, 1858  63x46,7 cm  The Ivanovs's association of art museums, Ivanovo, RussiaFyodor Bruni (1801-1875)  Saint Cecilia  Oil on canvas, 1825  164x124 cm  The State Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, RussiaFyodor Bruni (1801-1875)  Bacchant Giving Cupid a Drink  Oil on canvas, 1828  91x67 cm  The Russian Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia
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