Saint Jerome reading Saint Jerome in the wilderness, reading
Ribera, Jusepe de (lo Spagnoletto); printmaker; Spanish artist, 1591-1652
black carbon ink; medium
laid paper; support; mounted on all four corners onto backing sheet
height, plate, 192, mm
width, plate, 255, mm
height, sheet, 193, mm
width, sheet, 258, mm
bequeathed; 1816; Fitzwilliam, Richard, 7th Viscount
Etched c.1624, this is one of several religious prints by Ribera not linked to an existing painting. It may have been inspired by an earlier print, such as Lucas van Leyden's engraving of Saint Jerome reading in a landscape, with his companionable lion. Ribera adds a skull and a blasted tree stump on the left, reminders of mortality and the crucifixion, but the emphasis is still on reading, with open books and scrolls scattered around. Ribera made two earlier prints of Saint Jerome, although they are very different in treatment and feature the angel and trumpets of the Apocalypse interrupting the saint from his meditation. He also made a later painting in 1646 based on this print, and perhaps around the same time made two drawings of the saint seated in the wilderness. The form of the monogram on the print is exceptional and may have been added to the plate by another hand. The use of GR rather than JR led Lord Fitzwilliam to attribute the print to Guido Reni, and had the print pasted into his Reni album.
monogram; image upper left; printed; A GR [GR reversed and superimposed]; Not Ribera's monogram, although present on all known impressions of the print.
Illustrated Bartsch; 3
Brown (Ribera); 13
Object Number: 24.I.2-79
(Paintings, Drawings and Prints)
(record id: 93607; input: 2003-06-20; modified: 2016-08-23)