Vita Prima Exhibition. St Anthony in Portugal Santo António in Portugal

23 de June, 2023

Two pieces from the collection of the Casa-Museu Fernando de Castro, which is part of the Soares dos Reis National Museum, are part of the temporary exhibition VITA PRIMA. SANTO ANTÓNIO EM PORTUGAL, which opens on 23 June at the Palácio Pimenta in Lisbon. The polychrome clay sculpture Os Mártires de Marrocos (The Martyrs of Morocco) tells of the martyrdom of five Franciscan friars at the hands of Moorish soldiers, and the painting Cinco Frades Franciscanos (Five Franciscan Friars), possibly from the 17th century, relates to their mission to evangelise other territories.

The pieces are part of an exhibition that presents itself as a journey through the life of St Anthony as a young man and reflects how the values associated with him, both sacred and profane, have become pillars of Lisbon’s identity. The life of Fernando de Bulhões, before adopting the name of Saint Anthony, began in the Cathedral of Lisbon, passed through the Monastery of São Vicente de Fora, where he became a monk, and was followed by the Monastery of Santa Cruz in Coimbra. The death of the five Martyrs of Morocco in January 1220 made him take up the mendicant cause and set off to evangelise Morocco.

The exhibition will be open until 31 December 2023.