Raphael (1483 - 1520)

RA Collection: People and Organisations

Raphael’s life was brief but he produced work of such quality that his status as one of the greatest European artists has never been in doubt. His career coincided with the High Renaissance (1550–1520), in which he was perhaps the outstanding figure.

Raphael was born in the Italian town of Urbino in 1483, and lived there until moving to Florence in 1504. Most of his important works in the city were altarpieces. From 1508 until his death in 1520 Raphael lived in Rome, where he produced the astonishing paintings in the Vatican Palace for which he is best-known.

Raphael’s works for the palace also included designs for tapestries to hang on the walls of the Sistine Chapel (c.1515–6). Of Raphael’s ten cartoons seven survive in the Royal Collection (on long-term loan to the V&A Museum). Britain’s foremost decorative painter of the early 18th century, Sir James Thornhill, admired these cartoons so much that he painted full-size copies of them. Those copies were acquired by the RA in 1800 and provided an invaluable resource for artists to study Raphael’s celebrated designs.


Born: 1483

Died: 1520

Gender: Male

Works by Raphael in the RA Collection

40 results

Works after Raphael in the RA Collection

100 results

Works associated with Raphael in the RA Collection

7 results

Associated books

73 results

Associated archives

65 results