A 13th-Century Portrait of C. S. Lewis




In a letter of April 1924 to his father, C. S. Lewis wrote:


“Aunt Lily ... presented me with a print of an old picture,

‘St Francis preaching before Pope Honorious’ because, 

she said, the Pope was a portrait of me.”

(27 April 1924, Collected Letters vol. I, p. 627)



“It is not one of her fads,” Lewis added, “for I do really see the likeness myself.

I suppose nature has only a limited number of faces to use after all.”



The two Lewis portraits are details from photos taken in 1917 (right) and 1919 (left).

The portrait of Pope Honorius III (1216-1227) is a detail from a fresco made at the end

of the 13th century by Giotto di Bondone in the Basilica di San Francesco d’Assisi,

St Francis preaching before Honorius III (click for larger picture, 950 × 974)