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One of four surviving large drawings of the same model, all in red and white chalk - another is at 905538, the others in the Uffizi and a private collection (Effigies and Ecstasies, Edinburgh 1998, no. 39). To the posed figure Bernini here imaginatively a

A male nude seen from behind ©

Drawing was central to the practice of almost all Italian artists of the Renaissance and Baroque. In this section of the exhibition can be seen compositional sketches, life studies, designs for altarpieces, frescoes, prints, tapestries, woodwork, sculpture and architecture, models for the approval of patrons, and drawings produced as works of art in their own right.

The most common drawing materials of the fifteenth century had been metalpoint (a silver stylus on prepared paper) and pen and ink. Metalpoint was supplanted around 1500 by natural red and black chalks, and over the next two centuries artists frequently used combinations of coloured grounds, chalk, pen and ink, washes of dilute ink, and white highlights, to create drawings of great sophistication and beauty.

Historically, relatively few collectors, and only two British monarchs, have shown a serious interest in old master drawings. Charles II seems to have acquired most of the Renaissance drawings now in the Royal Collection; and George III acquired almost all of the Baroque drawings, most notably through the purchase in 1762 of the collections of both Consul Joseph Smith in Venice, and Cardinal Alessandro Albani in Rome.

Also present are some of the Royal Library's notable books and bindings of the period.

Lodovico Carracci (Bologna 1555-Bologna 1619)

A seated male nude

Agostino Carracci (Bologna 1557-Parma 1602)

The Adoration of the Shepherds

Annibale Carracci (Bologna 1560-Rome 1609)

A cartoon of a putto with a cornucopia

Annibale Carracci (Bologna 1560-Rome 1609)


Bartolomeo Schedoni (1566-1616)

A beggar

Girolamo Muziano (1528-92)

St Jerome

Domenichino (Bologna 1581-Naples 1641)

The Flagellation of St Andrew

Guido Reni (Bologna 1575-Bologna 1642)

An angel with a violin

Guido Reni (Bologna 1575-Bologna 1642)

The head of Christ

Lodovico Carracci (Bologna 1555-Bologna 1619)

The Martyrdom of St Ursula

Pier Francesco Mazzucchelli called Morazzone (1571-1626)

The Presentation of the Virgin

Rutilio Manetti (1571-1639)

St Gerard in ecstasy

Giovanni Francesco Barbieri known as Guercino (Cento 1591-Bologna 1666)

A recumbent male nude

Giovanni Francesco Barbieri known as Guercino (Cento 1591-Bologna 1666)

Composition study for The Burial and Reception into Heaven of St Petronilla

Francesco Borromini (1599-1667)

A design for the upper half of a column

Pietro da Cortona (Cortona 1596-Rome 1669)

A design for a Quarantore

Nicolas Poussin (1594-1665)

The saving of the infant Pyrrhus

Codex Ursinianus Copyist (active c. 1625)

Roman banquet

Vincenzo Leonardi (1590-c. 1648)

A Roman steelyard balance (statera)

Andrea Sacchi (1599-1661)

The Three Magdalenes

Giovanni Lanfranco (1582-1647)

The Martyrdom of St Thomas

Pietro Testa (1607/11-50)


Pier Francesco Mola (1612-66)

Bacchus and Ariadne

Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680)

A male nude seen from behind

Giovanni Lorenzo Bernini (1598-1680)

A study for a fountain of Neptune

Giovanni Angelo Canini (1617-66)

A male nude seen from below

Claude Gellée, called Le Lorrain (1604/5-82)

Acis and Galatea

Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione (1609-64)


Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione (1609-64)

The head of an oriental

Giovanni Andrea Sirani (1610-70)

The Madonna and Child with saints

Giovanni Paolo Schor (1615-1674)

An interior design for Pope Alexander VII

Filippo Lauri (Rome 1623-Rome 1694)

A ceiling design for Palazzo Borghese

Giovanni Battista Gaulli (1639-1709)

The Sacrifice of Noah

Domenico Maria Canuti (1620-84)

An allegory of Divine and Human Wisdom

Giovanni Battista Beinaschi (1636-88)

A prophet

Carlo Maratta (1625-Rome 1713)

A study for the Prophet Balaam

Daniel Saiter (1649-1705)

Diana and Endymion

Giovan Gioseffo Dal Sole (1654-1719)

Susannah and the Elders

Attributed to Francesco Colonna (1432-33-c. 1527)

Hypnerotomachia Poliphili

Homer (active 850 BC?)


Marcus Vitruvius Pollio (c. 80 BC-after 15 BC)

I dieci libri dell’architettura

Ovid (43 BC-17 AD)

Le Metamorfosi

Julius Caesar (100-44 BC)


Pietro Bembo (1470-1547)

Historiae Venetae libri XII

Torquato Tasso (1544-95)

La Gerusalemme liberata

Gaetano Piccini (1700-50)

Volume of drawings of bas-reliefs

Venice : Giunta

Psalterium Romanum

Giovanni Battista Marinella (late 17th century)

Descriptions of Poussin’s original designs & sketches