What is a paragon referred to in painting


A paragon is defined as the ideal or perfect example of something. A paragon is something against which everything else is judged or matched to, seen as the ideal form of something. In the case of art, a paragon is typically a model or one who sits for a painting—they are the ideal character or representation for what the artist is attempting to paint.

The term originates from “paragone,” an Italian word for a stone to test the purity of gold. It is intended to mean that a paragon is the item or individual against which other things are compared and tested—the perfect example. Additionally, the term “paragone” was used to define a debate between the skill and uniqueness of painting and sculpture in the Renaissance in an attempt to compare the two and determine which was the superior art form.


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