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17 September 2014
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You are here: BBC Science > Leonardo da Vinci
Baptism of Christ
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This painting was not by Leonardo, but by his tutor Verrocchio. However, it was common at the time for a master to leave details of a painting to his apprentices.

We believe that the angel on the left, and much of the background above it, were painted by a young Leonardo. Most of the painting is done in egg tempera, but Leonardo's angel is painted with oil paints, which were just being introduced to Italy. X-rays show that this part of the painting differs significantly from Verrocchio's original sketches.

It is said that Verrocchio was so impressed by Leonardo's work in this picture, that he vowed never to paint again.

Look For - The more subtle use of colour in Leonardo's figure. His angel also has flowing curly hair, a characteristic which Leonardo used in many of his later paintings.

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Go further

Leonardo: The Man, His Machines
In depth information about the Baptism of Christ

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