- Museum number
St John the Baptist in the Wilderness; whole-length seated, a lamb beside him at r
Pen and brown ink, with brown wash, on blue paper
- Production date
Height: 93 millimetres
Width: 100 millimetres (upper corners cut)
- Curator's comments
- Almost certainly a preparatory drawing for the chiaroscuro woodcut by Antonio da Trento (B.XII, p.73, 17), together with Ff,1.80. For a list of six other drawings of this subject by Parmigianino, see Ff,1.80.
See Popham, 'Catalogue of the Drawings of Parmigianino', Cambridge, 1971, No.206.
Almost certainly a preparatory drawing for the chiaroscuro woodcut by Antonio da Trento (B. xii, p. 73, 17). In addition to the present drawing and 1947,1108.1, six drawings of this subject by Parmigianino are known:
(a) Bayonne, Musée Bonnat 699 (Bean, no. 86; Popham, 'Parmigianino', pl. xxxiv).
(b) Bayonne, Musée Bonnat 1256 (Bean, no. 87).
(c) Uffizi 13636F (photo. Gernsheim 23679).
(d) Louvre 6437 (photo. Gernsheim 6984; 1964 Exh. Cat., no. 74).
(e) Louvre 6391 (photo. Gernsheim 6991; 1964 Exh. Cat., no. 73 and pl. xvi).
(f) Louvre 6391 bis (photo. Gernsheim 6990; 1964 Exh. Cat., no. 72).
In (a), (e), and (f) the lamb is held by an attendant winged putto, and in (e) and (f) St. John is drinking from a bowl. In Ff,1.80, (b) and (d) the lamb is held, or partly held, by the saint; in (c) and in the woodcut it lies on the ground; in 1947,1108.1 it seems to be lying in St. John's lap. The book resting on a ledge in 1947,1108.1 is an unusual possession for St. John in the wilderness, but this youthful figure can hardly be intended for St. Jerome.
In spite of these differences it seems possible that all these drawings were made in connection with the woodcut; 1947,1108.1 and Ff,1.80, (b), (c) and (d) almost certainly were. The position of the saint's legs in 1947,1108.1 and Ff,1.80 is approximately the same as in the woodcut, and in Ff,1.80 his l. arm was originally extended as there.
The Uffizi drawing in particular shows that Parmigianino was inspired by the chiaroscuro woodcut of the subject by Ugo da Carpi after Raphael (B. xii, p. 73, 18). Like the standing figure of the saint on Pp,2.131, the seated Baptist may also be a byproduct of the National Gallery 'Vision of St. Jerome'.
Literature: Quintavalle, p. 196; Popham, Parmigianino, p. 32.
- Not on display
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number