- Museum number
The Virgin and Child; the Virgin, three-quarter length, seated looking down at a scroll in her left hand, the Child at left climbing onto her lap
- Production date
Height: 376 millimetres
Width: 294 millimetres (arched)
- Curator's comments
- This was sold as 'Florentine School' in 1952 and it was Philip Pouncey who identified it as a characteristic work by Daniele da Volterra.
Lit.: J.A. Gere and P. Pouncey, 'Italian drawings in the BM, Artists working in Rome', London, 1983, no. 75; J. Stock and D. Scrase, in exhib. cat., Cambridge, Fitzwilliam Museum, 'The Achievements of a connoisseur: Philip Pouncey, Italian Old Master Drawings', 1985, no. 21; N. Turner, in exhib. cat., BM, 'The Study of Italian Drawings: The Contribution of Philip Pouncey', 1994, no. 66
Gere & Pouncey 1983
The second child lightly sketched lower r. is part of the group and is no doubt the Infant Baptist. The attribution to Daniele of the drawing, which was described in the Christie sale catalogue as "Florentine School", was suggested by its resemblance in composition and morphology to his painting of The Virgin and Child with the Infant Baptist and a Female Martyr in the Casa Ricciarelli in Volterra (Venturi, ix6, fig. 150). This painting, in which the Virgin is likewise holding a scroll, is not dated, but the approximate period ot the drawing is suggested by the latter's very close similarity, in style, handling and morphology, to the black chalk study for the full-length Virgin and Child in Daniele's Ulignano altarpiece, dated 1545 (Uffizi 14958F; Davidson, 'Perino', fig. 67, and Hirst, 1967, fig. 14). For the connection with the altarpiece, see M. Chiarini, 'Bollettino' l (1965), pp. 219f.
Though the arched top does not necessarily represent the artist's intention, the composition would appear to be complete, to judge from the emphatic horizontal at the bottom - presumably intended to suggest some kind of ledge - the only purpose of which seems to be to act as a termination.
Literature: Barolsky, Daniele, 1979, p. 115.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1964, BM, Michelangelo, no.113
1985 Oct-Dec, Cambridge, Fitzwilliam Museum, 'Philip Pouncey', no. 21
1994, BM, 'The Study of Italian Drawings', No. 66
2003/4 Sep-Jan, Florence, Casa Buonarroti, Daniele da Volterra amico di Michelangelo
- Acquisition date
- Acquisition notes
- This item has an uncertain or incomplete provenance for the years 1933-45. The British Museum welcomes information and assistance in the investigation and clarification of the provenance of all works during that era.
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number