The Fascinating Story of Michelangelo’s Moses and His Mysterious Little Finger

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The Enthralling Tale of Moses by Michelangelo and His Enigmatical Little Finger

For generations, art enthusiasts have been captivated by Michelangelo’s masterwork, the Moses sculpture. It’s all in the finger, though, as you may have seen. The statue’s bowed little finger conveys a sense of power and tension. This amazing detail demonstrates Michelangelo’s unmatched sculpting ability.

Michelangelo’s Moses housed in the church of San Pietro in Vincoli, Rome

Moses was constructed in the early sixteenth century as a component of Pope Julius II’s bigger project, his tomb. The Ten Commandments are held by Moses in the statue, the biblical figure who led the Israelites out of Egypt. However, the statue’s little finger is what really makes it unique.

Extensor digiti minimi

The finger is bowed so that it appears as though Moses is pressing down on the stone tablets he is holding, using all of his effort to keep them firm. Over the years, this particular feature has generated a lot of debate and conjecture. Some have proposed that it is Michelangelo’s way of venting his wrath and fury at the challenging job he had to do building the tomb.


Muscle ripple at the root of the little finger and an elevated extensor digiti minimi


Speculated hammer blow marks on the right knee


Whatever the motivation behind the bowed finger, it’s undeniable that it gives an already outstanding piece of art a tremendous sense of force and emotion. Take a close look at that little finger and be in awe of the talent and vision of one of the greatest artists in history if you ever get the chance to see Michelangelo’s Moses in person.

The Duomo Pietà is located at the Museum of Opera of Saint Maria of Fiore

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