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Saint Jerome

northern Italian school


This panel is first mentioned in the inventory of 1833, where it is attributed to Titian. It is certainly the work of a painter in Veneto who had absorbed the teachings of Albrecht Dürer. Dated to the 16th century, the painting depicts a hermit saint, most likely Saint Jerome, as suggested by the stone which he holds in his right hand.


Object details

Inventory
183
Location
Date
early 16th century
Classification
Period
Medium
oil on canvas
Dimensions
cm 36 x 26
Frame

19th-century frame, 94 x 42 x 5.5 cm

Provenance

Rome, Borghese Collection, 1833 (Inventario Fidecommissario 1833, p. 39; Della Pergola 1955); purchased by Italian state, 1902.

Conservation and Diagnostic
  • 1933 - Giuseppe Cellini;
  • 1953 - Mauro Manca;
  • 1992 - Istituto Centrale del Restauro (disinfestazione della tavola);
  • 2002/03 - Andrea Parri (frame)

Commentary

The provenance of this painting is still unknown. It is in fact only identifiable in the 1833 Inventario Fidecommissario, where it is attributed to Titian. Perhaps a fragment of a vaster work, this small canvas has been variously attributed to the Venetian school (Venturi 1893) and to that of Brescia-Bergamo (della Pergola 1955; Stefani 2000; Herrmann Fiore 2006). For his part, Roberto Longhi believed it to be by ‘a master who was by no means second-rate and who had absorbed the teachings of Dürer’ (reported as his oral opinion in della Pergola 1955). The painting was in fact executed in the style of the area of Veneto, probably the hinterland, by a painter who was well-versed in the tendencies of Venetian painting. The artist could indeed have been a late 15th-century follower of Bellini who came under the influence of Giorgione.

Antonio Iommelli




Bibliography
  • G. Piancastelli, Catalogo dei quadri della Galleria Borghese, in Archivio Galleria Borghese, 1891, p. 22;
  • A. Venturi, Il Museo e la Galleria Borghese, Roma 1893, p. 115;
  • R. Longhi, Precisioni nelle Gallerie Italiane, I, La R. Galleria Borghese, Roma 1928, p. 195;
  • P. della Pergola, La Galleria Borghese. I Dipinti, I, Roma 1955, p. 80, n. 142;
  • C. Stefani, in Galleria Borghese, a cura di P. Moreno, C. Stefani, Milano 2000, p. 277;
  • K. Herrmann Fiore, Galleria Borghese Roma scopre un tesoro. Dalla pinacoteca ai depositi un museo che non ha più segreti, San Giuliano Milanese 2006, p. 64.