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Another section rich in sixteenth-century prints after Raphael's designs

After a work copying Raphael (Urbino 1483-Rome 1520)

A lion attacking a man c.1853-76

Albumen print | 17.5 x 23.6 cm (sheet of paper) | RCIN 852282

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A photograph reproducing a pen and ink drawing depicting a man fighting with a lion now in the Gallerie dell'Accademia, Venice (inv. no. 34 verso). This drawing is on the verso of a sheet depicting a galley and a landscape (see RCIN 854524 for a photograph of the recto). Annotated on the verso.

Scholars have not been able to explain the iconographic motif of the lion attacking a man, with a dog coming to rescue the man and a shepherd surrounded by his flock, playing the bagpipes depicted in the background. A relation between the various motifs of this drawing and early nielli has been noted, which could suggest a shared model for the drawing and the nielli (see Bibliographic References). In the catalogue of the Gallerie dell'Accademia (see Bibliographic References), it has been proposed that a Florentine drawing by the circle of Maso Finiguerra (a goldsmith, niellist, draughtsman and engraver working in Florence) could have been the possible shared source, without an exact identification of this work. A very similar drawing, without the background scene, is in the British Museum (inv. no. 1923,1211.1), where it is catalogued as by an anonymous Florentine artist.

This drawing is part of the so-called Libretto di Raffaello or Libretto Veneziano, 53 sheets that used to be mounted in a volume. After complicated negotiations, the sketchbook was bought by the museum in the 1820s, after the death of Giuseppe Bossi, who was its previous owner. A number of scholars debated the author of the drawings (with many names proposed, such as Pinturicchio, Antonio da Viterbo, Eusebio del Giorgio, Girolamo Genga) and their date. In 1984, the Gallerie dell'Accademia catalogued the drawings as by an artist contemporary to Raphael, whose juvenile works he copied in this sketchbook (see Bibliographic References).
  • Creator(s)

    After a work copying Raphael (Urbino 1483-Rome 1520) (artist)

  • annotation: Top [verso, centre, in ink]
  • 17.5 x 23.6 cm (sheet of paper)

  • Acquired for the Prince Consort's Raphael Collection (c.1853-76)

  • Object type(s)
      • visual works
        • photographs
    • Natural Sciences & Mathematics
      • Zoology
        • Animals
          • Mammals
            • Carnivorous mammals
              • Felines
                • Lions
    • People
      • Men
    • Arts, Recreation, Entertainment & Sport
      • Music
        • Musical instruments
          • Wind instruments
            • Bagpipes
    • Science, Medicine and Technology
      • Agriculture and related techniques
        • Animal husbandry
          • Sheep
          • Dogs
  • Other number(s)

    Ruland p.169 A.I.1

    Bibliographic reference(s)

    Gallerie dell' Accademia di Venezia : catalogo dei disegni antichi. v. S. Ferino Pagden, Disegni Umbri (1984), pp. 115-116, under no.41 (for the drawing); pp. 13-31 (for the sketchbook)