- Museum number
The Delphic Sibyl; sitting on clouds and wearing a floral garland, she is holding an ivory horn in her right hand and an open book in her left. c.1480-90
- Production date
- 1480-1490 (circa)
Height: 179 millimetres
Width: 105 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- The print belongs to a group of twenty-four 'Prophets' and twelve 'Sibyls' executed in a style called by Hind the 'Broad Manner' and now attributed to Francesco Rosselli; the group is based on the earlier series of the same subject engraved in the 'Fine Manner' by Baccio Baldini (for a fuller discussion of the issue see the entry for Hind C.II.11.B.II: P&D 1868-8-22-10).
The present engraving is the first state of the print. Other examples of the first state are in the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York); Dresden; Ambrosiana, Milan (unsure if first or second state); in the Cleveland Museum of Art; and in the Rothschild collection (Louvre, Paris). The BM also possesses the third state of the print, heavily reworked (see P&D 1845-8-25-249).
The image is substantially different from Baldini's 'Delphic' Sibyl (Hind C.II.3.A and Mark J. Zucker, 'The Illustrated Bartsch, Commentary', vol. 24, part 1, 1993, p. 203, no. 078), which in turn was based on the figure of 'St Mark' by the German Master E.S.
Rosselli added a dense parallel shading on the sibyl's cloak to suggest the appropriate black colour of her mantle. Moreover, this version varies from its model in the different spelling of various words of the inscriptions.
This print was issued as a black and white facsimile by the British Museum in 'Reproductions of Prints in the British Museum', New [Second] Series Part I (Early Italian Prints), Published by the Trustees in 1886, where it was number III(A) and described there as 'Florentine School, XV. Century. The Delphian Sibyl.'; (Shelfmark 245*.b.15).
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number