1769, literally "pertaining to Pope Sixtus," from Italian sistino, from Sixtus, name of five popes, from Latin sextus "sixth" (see Sextus). The "chapel" is named for Sixtus IV (Francesco della Rovere), pope 1471-84, who had it built. The painting by Raphael known as the Sistine Madonna is so called because it also shows Sixtus II, a 3c. martyr and saint; it is better known now for the two cherubs at the bottom of the picture who by 1900 were well-known in isolation from the rest of the picture in engravings, etc.
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