- Museum number
Statue of Urania; in the Museo Pio-Clementino, Vatican (inv. 293).
Black chalk with grey wash.
- Production date
- 1781 - 1782
Height: 407 millimetres
Width: 254 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- One of a group of statues of the Muses found by Domenico de Angelis in the Villa of Cassius, near Tivoli, in 1774. They were purchased for the Vatican in 1775 by Visconti for 5,600 scudi and reconstructed in the Sala delle Muse.
The group of Muses were among the artworks taken to Paris by Napoleon in 1797 after his Italian Campaign, where they were displayed in the Louvre until his fall in 1815.
See: I. Bignamini and C. Hornsby, 'Digging and Dealing in Eighteenth-Century Rome' (London 2010), Vol. 1, pp. 260-261.
Georg Lippold, 'Die Skulpturen Des Vaticanischen Museums', (1936), III, I, no. 504, pl.8.
See also letter from James Byres to Townley, 29th September 1781:
‘…I have got to have drawings made of the Apollo and some muses with two of three other figures and have employed Signor Angeletti who draws very well to do them and hope by the time they are done to get leave for some more. I have agreed to pay 25 pounds a piece for them…’ (TY 7/689)
1st June 1782:
‘…By the favour of Mr Ferguson I had the pleasure of sending You ten drawings by Angeletti of the Apollo and nine Muses, which cost twenty five crowns…’ (TY 7/690)
and 13 [October or] December 1782:
‘…I had the honour of sending you…thirteen Drawings by Angeletti from Monuments put into the Museum since you left us and are the last that a---- can be got to do them at least for the present. As far as I can recollect Signor Angeletti’s drawings of the Muses were exact. There are only three of them that have their own heads. The Muse of Eloquence, Comedy & tragedy. The heads of the others were principally furnished by Hamilton, several of them much restored. The restoration of the right arm of the Comic Muse seems to me nearly what it originally was, holding the pedum[?] part of which is antique and on the upper part of the Mask is the mark were the hand originally rested…’. With this letter is an account sheet which includes these drawings: ‘to Angeletti 13 drawings at 2.50 [totalling] 32.50’ (TY7/692)
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Greek and Roman
- Registration number