Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio (1571-1610) was a boldly original painter who led a short and violent life. The powerful realism of his figures upset many of his contemporaries, and their power to shock remains undiminished. This book, providing a biography, presents all his most famous masterpieces, each with a commentary. The introduction gives an account of his wayward life and his artistic development. Controversial in his own lifetime, and neglected after his death, Caravaggio has re-emerged both as a great master and as something of a cult figure, the subject of a notable film by Derek Jarman.