Art Term

Nazarenes

The Nazarenes were a group of German artists founded in 1809. Their aim was to regenerate German painting by returning to the purity of the early Renaissance

Ford Madox Brown, ‘Jesus Washing Peter’s Feet’ 1852–6
Ford Madox Brown
Jesus Washing Peter’s Feet 1852–6
Tate
William Dyce, ‘Madonna and Child’ c.1827–30
William Dyce
Madonna and Child c.1827–30
Tate
Ford Madox Brown, ‘Our Lady of Good Children’ 1847–61
Ford Madox Brown
Our Lady of Good Children 1847–61
Tate

The group was founded by Johann Friedrich Overbeck and Franz Pforr who were later joined by Peter Von Cornelius. They were originally called the Brotherhood of St Luke (who is the patron saint of artists) but came to be known as the Nazarenes (i.e. inhabitants of Nazareth, Christ’s home town) because of their religious devotion.

The Nazarenes were known in England to William Dyce and Ford Madox Brown, who both reflected their ideas, and were part of the inspiration for the English Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood formed in 1848.