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Saint Norbert overcomes evil (bear symbol)

Author, school, workshop
Norbertine monastic sculptor (?)
Late Mannerism
Material and technique
Oak wood; shallow relief
Height 145 x width 85 cm
The Cathedral of St. John the Baptist in Wroclaw, Poland
In the foreground stands St. Norbert on the right, in front of a towering beast on two paws.

The saint is shown facing forward in habit with a pastoral in his left hand, his right hand raised. His head, surrounded by a radiant halo, turns towards the monstrosity. The animal with three-toed clawed feet, small ears and a short tail has an open mouth with bared teeth.

In the background, on the axis of the representation, a lamp suspended under a knot of a curtain stretched to the sides. Behind it is a painting in which: on the right is the Virgin Mary seated with the Child on her knees, and on the left is St. John the Baptist kneeling before her embracing the cross; a lamb lies between them.

Relief based on Th.Galle's engraving no.20 from the 'Vita S. Norberti' a book annotated and published by Ch. van der Sterre in Antwerp in 1622.