Raphael fell gravely ill and died on Good Friday 1517, which many believe was also the date of his birth. He may have died of overwork, but given the unhealthy environment of Rome, he could have fallen to an infectious disease. In his will, he left most of his estate to his beloved Margarita. Raphael was buried in the Pantheon in Rome and is early death cut short the life of a remarkable artistic talent.
==Raphael’s influence on painting==
Raphael had an enormous impact on the history of painting in the Renaissance. His work was very classical in style and in this regard it was similar to Michelangelo and Leonardo. However, he took painting in a new direction and he was prepared to show the emotional life of his subject. Previously artists had been reluctant to show emotions in a realistic way under the influence of classical art. Raphael was not afraid to portray his subjects in an emotionally realistic way and this made him very popular. In particular, it meant that he was a much-admired portraitist. His portraits are concerned among some of the finest that has ever been composed and influenced painters during the later Renaissance and even later. Raphael was not an innovator in painting techniques but perfected many techniques. This gave his works a very harmonious quality that was much admired and emulated. Raphael’s ‘sprezzatura' or naturalness was especially praised <ref>Piper, David.The Illustrated History of Art. 2004. Octopus Printing: UK) </ref>. Despite his great artistry, he was able to conceal it and nothing painted by him every appears to be contrived or forced. It is claimed that this naturalness and effortlessness was something that even the great Michelangelo envied. In some of Raphael’s works, such as his frescoes in the Vatican we can see the beginnings of a new school of painting. The Urbino artist’s, contrasts of light and dark, and use of dramatic colors inspired the development of the Mannerist School <ref>Piper, p 202</ref>. This was a movement that includes painters such as Tintoretto and influenced the work of El Greco. Raphael is considered to be one of the great religious painters in the Christian tradition of all time and his depictions of the crucifixion of Christ are considered to be masterpieces. However, it is his depictions of the Madonna, or Mary the mother of Jesus Christ that has been particularly admired. Raphael’s portrayal of the Madonna changed the course of religious art in the Renaissance and indeed to this day, the many representations of the Virgin Mary, show the mark of his influence. Raphael was enormously influential and was called the ‘Prince of Painters’ by the first art historian Giorgio Vasari <ref> Vasari, Giorgio (2000). Lives of the Painters (London, Penguin, 2000), p. 178</ref>. Raphael was not only influential in his own day but also later. His fame was eclipsed by others in the Baroque, but he was extremely popular in the 19th century and was widely emulated.
[[File: Raphael 3.jpg |200px|thumb|left|Portrait of Julius II]]
==Raphael as an architect==