Pinftus is mentioned by Eusebius (Hist. Eccles. 4, 29, 31) as bishop of Cnossus, in the isle of Crete, and as a contemporary of Dionysius of Corinth (q.v.). According to the notices given by Eusebius, Dionysius addressed an epistle to Pinytus, exhorting him that, concerning abstinence (ἁγνεία), not to lay too heavy a yoke on the brethren (τοῖς ἀδελφοῖς), but rather pay regard to the weakness of the majority. It seems that Pinytus tried to promote in his congregation a Montanistic or Gnostico ascetic tendency. Pinytus, however, persevered in his course, and replied to Dionysius that it was time to offer to his congregation a stronger meat than milk. Some have thought that the point of difference between Dionysius and Pinytus was rather concerning celibacy, which the latter intended to introduce among his clergy; but this is a mistake. In other respects, Eusebius speaks of this rejoinder of Pinytus as containing the best proof of the latter's orthodoxy, his care for the salvation of the souls committed to his charge, his rhetoric, and understanding of divine things. See Herzog, Real-Encykl. s.v.; Theol. Univ. — Lex. s.v.; Jicher, Gelehrt. — Lex. s.v.; Eusebius, Hist. Eccles, 4:29,31. (B. P.) Piombo, Fra SEBASTIANO DEL, an eminent Italian painter, noted in the history of sacred art, was born in 1485 at Venice, whence he was called also "Veneziano." His surname, according to Lanzi, was Luciano, though it does not appear that he was known by it in his own time, or that he ever marked his pictures with it. On his principal performance in oil, the Raising of Lazarus, the words "Sebastianus Venetus faciebat" appear in characters no doubt traced by himself. He was a skilful musician, particularly on the lute, but abandoned that science for painting, the rudiments of which he acquired under Bellini, but afterwards became the disciple of Giorgione, whose style of coloring he carefully studied and successfully imitated. He first distinguished himself as a portrait-painter, to which his powers were peculiarly adapted. His portraits are boldly designed and full of character; the heads and hands are admirably drawn, with an exquisite tone of color and extraordinary relief. The first historical picture which established his reputation was the altar- piece in the church of San Gio. Crisostomo at Venice, which, from its richness and harmony of coloring, has frequently been mistaken for a work by his master Giorgione. Sebastiano was invited to Rome by Agostino Chigi, a rich merchant who traded at Venice, by whom he was employed in ornamenting his palace of the Farnesina, in conjunction with Baldassare Peruzzi, where Raffaelle had painted his celebrated Galatea. Thus painting in competition, he found his own deficiency of invention, to remedy which he studied the antique, and obtained the instruction and assistance of Michael Angelo. Indeed it is said that that illustrious painter, growing jealous of the fame of Raffaelle, availed himself of the powers of Sebastiano as a colorist in the hope that, assisted by his composition, Piombo might become a successful rival. Michael Angelo accordingly furnished the designs for the Pieta in the church of the Conventuali at Viterbo, and the Transfiguration and the Flagellation in San Pietro in Montorio at Rome, the execution of' which, however, in consequence of Piombo's tedious mode of proceeding, occupied six years. The extraordinary beauty of the coloring, and the grandeur of Michael Angelo's composition and design in these celebrated productions, were the objects of universal surprise and applause. At this time cardinal Julian de' Medici commissioned Raffaelle to paint his picture of the Transfiguration, and being desirous of presenting an altar-piece to the cathedral of Narbonne, of which he was archbishop, he engaged Sebastiano to paint a picture of the Raising of Lazarus, of the same dimensions. Vasari states that in the composition of this work he was assisted by Michael Angelo; and in the magnificent collection of drawings belonging to Sir Thomas Lawrence there were two careful sketches of the Lazarus, made by Michael Angelo, and several slighter ones of other parts of the design. On its completion the picture was publicly exhibited at Rome, in competition with the Transfiguration, and it excited general admiration, although thus brought into direct competition with the crowning glory of Raffaelle's pencil. It was sent to the cathedral of Narbonne, for which it was painted, and remained till the middle of the 18th century, when it was removed by the regent of France into the Orleans collection. Having been brought to England with the rest of that collection in 1792, it was pure chased for two thousand guineas, and is now deposited in the National Gallery at London. It was painted on wood, but has been transferred to canvas; its size is twelve feet six inches high, and nine feet six inches wide. After the death of Raffaelle, Piombo was called the first painter in Rome. He was greatly patronized by pope Clement VII, who conferred upon him the office of keeper of the papal signet, which was the cause of his name, Del Piombo, in allusion to the lead of the seal. This position rendering it necessary that he should assume a religious habit, he abandoned the profession of a painter, and was thenceforth called Fra Sebastiano del Piombo. His works were numerous;- some fine ones are in Madrid and St. Petersburg; many are in Venice, and they are seen in several Continental galleries. The last work was the chapel of the Chigi family, in Santa Maria del Popolo, which he left imperfect, and it was afterwards finished by Francisco Salviati. He died of a fever, at Rome, in 1547. He is said to have been the inventor of painting upon walls with oil-color, and of preventing the colors from becoming dark by applying, in the first instance, a mixture of mastic and Grecian pitch, or, according to some authorities, a plaster composed of quick-lime, pitch, and mastic. See Spooner, Biog. Hist. of the Fine Arts, s.v.; Clement, Painters, Sculptors, Architects, etc., s.v.

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