New Catholic Dictionary – Fra Angelico

detail of Fra Angelico from 'Dispute over the Holy Scripture' by RaphaelAlso known as

  • Guido di Pietro
  • Giovanni da Fiesole


Religious painter, born near Castello di Vicchio, Tuscany, Italy; died Rome, Italy. Entering the Dominican Order as Fra Giovanni, in Fiesole, 1407, the illumination of missals and manuscripts furnished his first training in art. For the Dominican convent in Cortona where he lived, 1414-1418, he painted the well-known “Madonna and Four Saints,” and for the baptistery a first “Annunciation.” Returning to Fiesole in 1418, he painted the “Christ in Glory Surrounded by Saints and Angels,” now in the National Gallery of London. He was invited to Florence in 1436 to decorate the new convent of San Marco. Among the paintings and frescos still to be seen in the galleries of the city and in the national museum established in the former convent are the “Crucifixion,” “Madonna of the Star,” “Coronation of the Virgin,” and “Christ as a Pilgrim.” His finest work is in the chapel of Nicholas V in the Vatican, a series of frescos depicting the lives of Saint Stephen and Saint Lawrence. The dedication of his art to religious subjects earned him the title of “Angelico,” and the holiness of his life caused him to be beatified, so that he is also known as “Il Beato” (the Blessed). His work is noted for an extraordinary spiritual quality, bright decorative detail, and exquisite coloring.



MLA Citation

  • “Fra Anglico”. New Catholic Dictionary. CatholicSaints.Info. 16 August 2012. Web. 22 October 2020. <>