While celebrating the Mass, a great flame is seen over the head of Ignatius
Carlo Bovio (1614–1705).
Ignatius insignium epigrammatum et elogiorum centuriis.
Rome: Ignazio de Lazari, 1655.
One hundred etchings, many featuring optical or alchemical apparatus, decorate this emblem book by the Jesuit Carlo Bovio on the life and precepts of Saint Ignatius Loyola (1491–1556). Caption titles identify particular incidents in the life of Ignatius, each illustrated by allegorical images accompanied by brief Latin mottos and additional epigrams and prose. The image of a mirror reflecting light from the sun is used as a metaphor to explain the story of an appearance of flames over his head, suggesting that the saint’s purity likewise reflected God’s divinity.