- Museum number
Adoration of the Magi, after Filippino Lippi; the Virgin, in the centre sitting in the stable, with the Christ Child on her lap, holding one of the Magi's gifts, and St Joseph behind; surrounded by the Three Kings, two of them kneeling, and by several onlookers; a procession of riders arriving from the left background; three singing angels hovering above the Virgin; signed lower right: 'ROBETTA'. c.1500-1510
- Production date
- 1500-1510 (circa)
Height: 298 millimetres
Width: 280 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- The original copper plate for this print is in the BM, see 1888, 0117.13. The 'Allegory of Carnal Love' (Hind D.II.29) is engraved on the reverse of the plate. As a result, impressions of both subjects are among the most frequently encountered of Robetta's works.
The BM possesses other two impressions of the subject, one of them coeval (P&D 1842-8-6-33) and the other possibly later (P&D 1895-9-15-82).
This is one of Robetta's largest engravings; it is, as usual, a combination of German and Italian influences. The general composition is based on Filippino Lippi's 'Adoration of the Magi' of 1496 (Uffizi, Florence) and the idea of placing the Virgin and two of the Magi in a pyramidal group at the centre possibly follows the invention of Leonardo da Vinci in his unfinished version of the 'Adoration' commissioned in 1481 for the monastery of San Donato a Scopeto outside Florence. The singing angels may have been suggested by Domenico Ghirlandaio's 'Adoration' of 1488 in the Ospedale degli Innocenti (Florence). On the other hand, the treatment of the ground and the rolling landscape recall the manner of early Dürer; moreover, the hat in the foreground just above Robetta's signature at the lower r is copied from Martin Schongauer's 'Adoration of the Magi' (Bartsch 6; Hollstein 6), as are the heads of the ox and the ass visible to the r of the Virgin.
For a discussion of Robetta's oeuvre see Hind D.II.4 (P&D Kk.8.30).
See also Jay A. Levinson, Konrad Oberhuber, and Jacquelyn Sheehan, Early Italian Engravings from the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1973, no. 118.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1995/6 Oct-Jan, Aylesbury, Buckingham County Museum, The Magi
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number