putti

Detail - Raphael Sistine Madonna
Putti (detail from Raphael's Sistine Madonna). Scan © Mark Harden, used with permission

Definition:

(plural noun) - Putti are those plump little naked boys with wings that one often sees in Renaissance, Mannerist, Baroque and Rococo art. Typically, a putto (the singular form) depicts an angel or cherub in a religious scene, but he may also come in the form of Cupid. In either case, a putto's presence symbolizes love, whether Divine or of a more earthly nature. Incidentally, you never run across ugly putti in art; they're so cute you could just pinch them.

Pronunciation: poo·tee

Also Known As: amorini; amoretti

Common Misspellings: putty, puti

Examples: "The body of the bed was like a great square sarcophagus. Clustering roses were carved in high relief on its wooden panels, and luscious putti wallowed among the roses." - Aldous Huxley, Chrome Yellow

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Esaak, Shelley. "putti." ThoughtCo, Dec. 13, 2005, thoughtco.com/art-history-glossary-p-putti-182455. Esaak, Shelley. (2005, December 13). putti. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/art-history-glossary-p-putti-182455 Esaak, Shelley. "putti." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/art-history-glossary-p-putti-182455 (accessed November 20, 2017).