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The Moses is a marble sculpture by Michelangelo Buonarroti 1513-1515 which depicts the Biblical figure Moses, part of the tomb of Pope Julius II.
Originally intended for St. Peter’s Basilica, “Moses” and the tomb were instead placed in the minor church of San Pietro in Vincoli on the Esquiline in Rome after the pope’s death. This church was patronised by the della Rovere family from which Julius came, and he had been titular cardinal there.
The statue depicts Moses with horns on his head. This is believed to be because of a mistranslation of Exodus 34:29-35 by St Jerome. Moses is actually described as having “rays of the skin of his face”, which Jerome in the Vulgate had translated as “horns” (See Halo). The mistake in translation is possible because the word age can mean either “radiated (light)” or “grew horns”.
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