Collection online


  • Object type

  • Museum number


  • Description

    A scene from a classical legend; a nude woman kneeling before two seated men and a man at right having his thigh bandaged, nude figures surrounding Pen and brown ink, with grey-brown wash

  • Producer name

  • School/style

  • Date

    • 1516-1547
  • Materials

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 262 millimetres
    • Width: 421 millimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Content

        Pouncey & Gere 1962
        Inscribed on backing in ink, in a seventeenth or eighteenth-century hand: "Perino del Vaga".
  • Curator's comments

    An early drawing by Perino when he was still much influenced by his master Raphael. The composition is inspired by a Raphael composition, which is known through a variety of copies (including one by Michel Coxcie in the BM, 1946,0713.151). The meaning of the scene has not been explained; it may illustrate a classical legend of magnaminity. Pouncey and Gere suggested that the laboured finish and the lack of alterations indicated that the drawing was intended to be engraved, Gnann in the Mantua-Vienna catalogue proposed instead that it was a study for a scene to be painted on a palace façade. A copy after the drawing, perhaps by Michel Corneille II, is in the Louvre (8722; Py p. 321) Lit.: P. Pouncey and J.A. Gere, 'Italian Drawings in the BM, Raphael and his circle', London, 1962, no. 158, p. 93, pl. 124; J.A. Gere, in exhib. cat., New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, 'Raphael and his circle', 1987, no. 71, pp. 233-4; E. Parma Armani, 'Perin del Vaga: l'anello mancante', Genoa, 1986, p. 43, fig. 37; A. Gnann, in exhib. cat. (K. Oberhuber and A. Gnann eds), Mantua, Palazzo Te and Vienna, Albertina, 'Roma e lo stile classico di Raffaello', 1999, no. 219, p. 306; B. Py, 'Everhard Jabach Collectionneur (1618-1695), Les Dessins de l'Inventaire de 1695', Paris, 2001, no. 72, p. 49; ; E. Parma, 'Perino del Vaga, ingegno sottile e capriccioso', in exhib. cat. (E. Parma ed.), Mantua, Palazzo Te, 'Perino del Vaga: tra Raffaello e Michelangelo', 2001, p. 16, illustrated p. 17

    Pouncey & Gere 1962
    In the Woodburn Sale and until recently, in spite of the inscription and Dimier's listing of the drawing under "attributions fausses", attributed to Primaticcio. 1860,0616.118 is certainly by Perino, in spite of its, for him, unusually elaborate technique and high degree of finish. We would be inclined to date it early in the artist's career, at a time when he was still under the inspiration of Raphael: the legs of the wounded man derive from those of the 'Standard-bearer' in the engraving by Marcantonio (B. xiv, p. 357, no. 481), while the composition as a whole seems to be in the line of descent from Raphael's groups of fighting nudes (F [iv] 193-5). The laboured finish and absence of pentimenti suggest that 1860,0616.118 was made for the engraver, but no engraving of it is known nor are the outlines indented.
    1860,0616.118 is connected in subject with a drawing at Lille (Pluchart 367, as "attributed to Giulio Romano"; Gernsheim 18196, repr. Fischel [v], fig. 192). This, though it differs in all details, also shows a woman kneeling before a seated man (not as in 1860,0616.118 before two) with on the r. a man having his thigh bandaged. It seems probable that this preserves a composition by Raphael himself, which would have been comparable with the groups of fighting nudes referred to above. A drawing of the same subject, by Michael Coxcie, is also in the Department (1946,0713.151; Popham, Fenwick, p. 181, no. 1). This agrees with the Lille drawing in most details, except that the seated figure appears not as a nude youth but as an elderly bearded man wearing a robe and diadem.
    These drawings may perhaps illustrate some classical legend of 'magnanimity'. That at Lille is described by Pluchart as the 'Continence of Scipio' and by Fischel as 'Alexander the Great and Timoclea'; but the elderly crowned figure in the Coxcie version is not consistent with either interpretation, nor in either legend is emphasis given to a man wounded in the leg. A weak old pen copy of 1860,0616.118 in the Louvre (8772, under 'École de Fontainebleau', and traditionally attributed to Rosso) is inscribed "Atalante vaincue à la course".

    Literature: L. Dimier, Le Primatice, Paris, 1900, p. 481.


  • Bibliography

    • Pouncey & Gere 1962 158 bibliographic details
  • Location

    Not on display (Italian Roy XVIc)

  • Exhibition history

    1962/3 Nov-Sep, BM, 'Raphael and his Circle', (P+G) 1977 May-Jun, Hermitage, 'Italian Renaissance', no. 39 1977 Jul-Aug, Moscow, Pushkin Museum, 'Italian Renaissance', no. 39 1980, Adelaide and Melbourne, no. 39 1987/8 Oct-Jan, New York, Pierpont Morgan Library, 'Raphael', No.71 1999 Mar-May, Mantua, Palazzo Te, 'Roma e lo stile classico di Raffaello', No.219 1999 Jul-Sep, Vienna, Albertina, 'Roma e lo stile classico di Raffaello', No.219

  • Subjects

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date


  • Acquisition notes

    Inscribed by Jabach on backing: "NB: vient du Cabinet de Dela Noue:/[de lui est la Marque cy jointe - written over]/[et ensuite de Mr Jabac - crossed through]" Pouncey & Gere 1962 The words "de lui est la Marque cy-jointe" are erased and refer to a paraphe in black chalk which resembles one of Jabach's (L 2959). The latter's mark L 960a is also on the backing

  • Department

    Prints & Drawings

  • Registration number


A scene from a classical legend; a nude woman kneeling before two seated men and a man at r having his thigh bandaged, nude figures surrounding Pen and brown ink, with grey-brown wash


A scene from a classical legend; a nude woman kneeling before two seated men and a man at r having his thigh bandaged, nude figures surrounding Pen and brown ink, with grey-brown wash

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