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Alonso Cano

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Alonzo Cano o Alonso Cano (1601 - 1667) was a Spanish painter, architect and sculptor born in Granada. He learned architecture from his father, Miguel Cano, painting from Francisco Pacheco the master of Velazquez, and sculpture from Juan Martínez Montañés. As a sculptor, his most famous works are the Madonna and Child in the church of Lebrija (also called Nebrija, and the colossal figures of San Pedro and San Pablo. Philip IV made him royal architect and kings painter, and gave him the church preferment of a canon, 1658, in order to take up a position as chief architect of the cathedral of Granada, where his main achievement in architecture was the facade, designed at the end of his life and erected to his design after his death.

He was notorious for his ungovernable temper; and it is said that once he risked his life by committing the then capital offence of dashing to pieces the statue of a saint, when in a rage with the purchaser who grudged the price he demanded. His known passionateness also (according to another story) caused him to be suspected, and even tortured, for the murder of his wife, though all other circumstances pointed to his servant as the culprit.

This article incorporates text from the public-domain Catholic Encyclopedia of 1913.


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