A painting of the Outrage of Anagni at Tajan auctions on March 23, 2023

PARIS – On the occasion of its fine auction of Old Master Paintings & Drawings organized on March 23, Tajan Auction House presents a work by the Polish artist Jules Boncza Tomaszewski (1834 – 1920) depicting the historic scene of the Anagni outrage.


At the turn of the XIIIth century, many subjects of discord opposed the pope Boniface VIII, and the king of France Philippe IV le Bel. The bishop of Pamiers, Bernard de Saisset, contested the legitimacy of the king who had him arrested and locked up in a secular prison. The Pope contested this decision and reaffirmed the primacy of the Holy See over temporal sovereigns while the king advocated Gallicanism. In 1295, Philip IV set up a tax on the clergy without the agreement of the pope, which upset him. Faced with this, Boniface VIII threatened the king with excommunication in 1303. Guillaume de Nogaret, the king’s chancellor, was sent to notify the pope, who was then staying in the city of Anagni, that he had been summoned to a council with the aim of deposing him. For this, he was accompanied by the Colonna, who were opposed to the pope. An argument broke out as the Colonna’s used force to get the pope to renounce his office. Consputed and molested, Boniface VIII dies one month later.

Jules Boncza Tomaszekski (1834 – 1920) treats here this historical subject with an exacerbated romanticism by using vivid colors, bringing a strong tone to the main actors, Pope Boniface VIII, the member of the Colonna family as well as Guillaume de Nogaret. The touch of thick matter as well as the beam of light put the emphasis on the Pope to whom all the importance is given. This pictorial treatment contributes to the tragedy of the scene unfolding before the eyes of the spectators.


Thaddée Prate, director of the Department of Old Masters Paintings and Drawings presents the Outrage of Anagni by Jules BONCZA TOMASZEWSKI (PETROGRAD, 1834 – NICE, 1920).



The Anagni outrage,
Original canvas, signed lower right
63,50 x 81 cm – 25 x 31,9 in.

1 500 – 2 000€



Discover the auction « Old Master Paintings and Drawings »

Auction on March 23, 3pm CET
Espace Tajan, 37 rue des Mathurins 75008 Paris



Thaddée Prate
Director of the Old Master Paintings and Drawings  Department
+33 1 53 30 30 47
[email protected]

Landry Orizet
+33 1 53 30 30 46
[email protected]

Chloé Karmi
Specialist of the Old Master Paintings and Drawings  Department
+33 1 53 30 30 16
[email protected]