Junger Bettler


The Young Beggar, 1645 - 1650

The Young Beggar is often called The Lice-Ridden Boy because he is delousing himself. The picture is the first known depiction of a street urchin in Murillo's work. The painting was undoubtedly inspired by the rampant misery in the streets of Seville during the Golden Age. Influenced by Caravaggism, Murillo dwells on sordid details and uses stark contrasts of light and shade. Yet the boy also has the gracefulness that is the Sevillian master's hallmark.