St Margaret (c.1631). Francisco de Zurbarán (Spanish, 1598-1664). Oil on canvas. National Gallery, London.
Zurbarán has portrayed her with straw hat and staff as a Spanish shepherdess. Behind her is the dragon which she is said to have overcome with the sign of the cross. Inactive, with the Bible in her hand and a shepherd’s bag over her arm, she gazes with a sweetly childish face. This painting does not tell the turbulent episodes of her life, but shows a saintly woman revered in Zurbarán’s home country.