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Did Michelangelo Sculpt David? | The Statue of David

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The statue of David was carved from a single piece of marble. Interestingly, this piece of marble had been purchased twice before Michelangelo by artists who either couldn’t or wouldn’t process the block of stone. Therefore, a lot of people were asking themselves if Michelangelo sculpt David. And the correct answer can be found below.

Michelangelo is one of the most famous geniuses in the history of art. His iconic creation and sculpture – the statue of David, King of the Israelites – is probably the most famous sculpture in the world. It’s an incredible work that everyone recognizes and knows something about. However, it is only when you look at the statue up close that the skill and patience with which Michelangelo created this masterpiece becomes apparent.

David’s name has been translated into biblical Latin as “fortis manu, sive desiderabilis,” where “fortis manu” means “strong hand.” Perhaps, for this reason, David’s right hand is not proportional to the rest of his body.

How tall is the statue of David?

Initially, the statue of David was to be placed on the roof of the cathedral dome in Florence. However, because the work astonished everyone with its beauty, the plan was abandoned so that the sculpture could be appreciated by anyone up close.

The statue of David is five meters high and weighs 5,572 kg. David towers above us, which is very significant considering that David is seen as weak in the story of David and Goliath.

The marble material sat abandoned for 25 years before Michelangelo began working on it for two years when he was 29. 

Was David left-handed?

Michelangelo is said to have based his image of David on typical representations of the god Hercules, who was considered an essential figure in Renaissance Florence.

Since he holds his sling in his left hand, many people think David is left-handed. However, others argue that the future king’s body position shows that he is, in fact, right-handed.

Even the Grand Duke of Tuscany made a copy of the statue of David for Queen Victoria. The British sovereign was so offended by the nudity that she ordered the statue’s nakedness to be covered with a modest fig leaf.

How is the statue of David presented?

Every year, eight million people visit the Galleria dell’Accademia, the home of the statue of David. Unfortunately, the footsteps of these curious onlookers lead David to destruction, as they cause vibrations that crack the marble. For this reason, the statue is frequently restored.

David holds a sling on his left shoulder in the statue, and in his right hand, he holds a stone. With these primitive weapons, David is poised to attack the Philistines’ giant champion, Goliath, before whom he will emerge victorious in his first significant act before becoming Israel’s most famous king.

Every year, eight million people visit the Galleria dell’Accademia, home to the statue of David. Unfortunately, the footsteps of these onlookers lead David to destruction, as they cause vibrations that crack the marble. For this reason, the statue is frequently restored.

Michelangelo Sculpt David

When did Michelangelo sign the contract to make the sculpt of David?

On July 2, 1501, the people in charge of the Opera del Duomo, who was in charge of supervising the construction of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, found a thin piece of stone “lying on its back” in the courtyard. They erect the block, then start looking for a sculptor. It’s a tough job. What craftsman sets out to fix something that someone has broken? Andrea Sansovino is the one. He’s brought in front of the marble but gets lost. A failure before it begins! Is there no one in the world who knows?

On August 16, 1501, Michelangelo was called to sign the contract to begin sculpt David. An essential bank in Florence is a sponsor. The only request is that the work is finished. On 13 September 1501, Michelangelo picked up his hammer and began work.

He will give life to David, the biblical hero. “The greatness of the virile nude,” as he was to be called. He brings him to life just before the mythical battle against Goliath, which is why he appears with a slingshot. The block of stone is chipped away by its predecessors, but the artist is too great. He takes advantage of the gap he found between his right arm and his torso, disproportionates his hands, and emphasizes David’s gesture.

When did Michelangelo sculpt the statue of David?

The Florentines don’t know what to think. It’s been almost 40 years since the “masters” worked to carve the piece of stone quarried in Carrara. The cathedral of Santa Maria de Fiore was due to receive a statue of a prophet some time ago. Something gigantic, majestic.

For 40 years, many sculptors have been carving stone. They couldn’t give it a face, so they cut it. On 13 September 1501, Michelangelo, one of the finest hands humanity has ever produced, set to work on sculpting David. In three years, he gives life to David, the biblical hero. The 4.34-meter marble is considered one of the most beautiful works of art of all time.

By 1463, Agostino di Duccio, a sculptor with a CV, was hard at work. Three wasted years. Antonio Rossellino had then moved on to commission. He messed up even worse. “The block wasn’t compact enough. It had too many veins,” he defended himself before the abandonment. He had made 1500 in vain, but thanks to Michelangelo, the bright genius.

Primary Takeaways

  • Michelangelo believes and says loud and clear that every piece of marble has life. He wants to show the soul inside. He has worked for three years. Until 1504, the year of Stephen the King’s death, when the 4.34-meter work is finished (5.17 meters with plinth, 5572 kilos). Donatello’s “Judith” is banished from the front of the Palazzo Vecchio, and, on 8 September, “David” takes its place.
  • Michelangelo Sculpt David and begins his story. Immediately, the partisans of the Medici family stone him. In 1512 lightning strikes his plinth. In 1527, the same family’s supporters broke his left arm. In 1843, he was washed with hydrochloric acid. The protective glow left by Michelangelo disappears, and the statue becomes exposed to the elements.
  • In 1873, the decision was taken to move the sculpture indoors to the Academy Gallery. During the Second World War, just in case, it is covered in brick. In 1991, a madman, Piero Cannata, came with a hammer and broke a finger.


An emblem of the Italian Renaissance, David sculpt by Michelangelo between 1501 and 1504 in a single piece of Carrara marble, depicts the biblical hero as he prepares to face Goliath with a sling.

The sculpture has been shaken by the more than 250 earthquakes that have occurred in the last three days in the Florence region. The authorities have announced they will provide emergency funds to reinforce the work.