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The Sistine Chapel, named after Pope Sixtus IV, is perhaps the gem of the Vatican Museums. Michelangelo Buonarroti was commissioned by Pope Julius II in 1508 to repaint the ceiling of the Chapel, while it was under Pope Paul III that he painted the Last Judgment, maybe his greatest masterpiece, in 1535. Numbers help to understand the grandeur of his work: the painted area is about 40 m (131 ft) long by 13 m (43 ft) wide, this means that Michelangelo painted well over 5,000 square feet (460 m2) of frescoes.
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To paint the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo used bright colours, so that the figures were well-visible from the floor. On the lowest part of the ceiling he painted the ancestors of Christ, above this he alternated male and female prophets, with Jonah over the altar. On the highest section, Michelangelo painted nine stories from the Book of Genesis. His world-famous figures shows the creation, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden, and the Great Flood. Finally, the Last Judgment spans the entire wall behind the altar, depicting the second coming of Christ and the Apocalypse.
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