Made in Rome for the Museo Cartaceo of Cassiano dal Pozzo (1588-1657);
by descent to his brother, Carlo Antonio dal Pozzo (died 1689);
by descent to his son, Gabriele dal Pozzo;
by descent to his son, Cosimo Antonino dal Pozzo;
sold in 1703 to Pope Clement XI (Albani);
by descent in January 1714 to Cardinal Alessandro Albani;
from whom acquired in 1762 by James Adam for King George III, and thereafter in the Royal Collection, Windsor, until after the First World War, when several albums of dal Pozzo natural history drawings were dispersed
This page was once part of Cassiano dal Pozzo's extensive collection of natural history, botanical, architectural and antiquarian drawings known as the Museo Cartaceo or 'paper museum'. Dal Pozzo (1588-1657) was educated in Florence but moved to Rome where he became a prominent figure in the intellectual life of the city. He became associated with collectors such as Cardinal del Monte, the patron of Caravaggio, and Cardinal Francesco Barberini, and commissioned drawings and paintings from artists such as Pietro Testa, Pietro da Cortona, and Nicolas Poussin. He was admitted to Federico Cesi's Accademia dei Lincei, a scientific society founded in 1603, of which Galileo was also a member.
In the time-honoured tradition of the cabinet of curiosities, a significant number of Cassiano's natural history drawings record unique, strangely shaped fruits, such as the present examples which seem to be citruses. They may have been intended for illustrations for G.B. Ferrari's Hesperides, a monumental treatise on citrus fruits published in 1646. For a full discussion of this important publication and of Cassiano's involvement in it, see David Freedberg, 'Cassiano dal Pozzo's Drawings of Citrus Fruits', in Quaderni Puteani, Il Museo Cartaceo di Cassiano dal Pozzo, vol. I, 1989, p.16ff. Some of the drawings Freedberg illustrates bear the same small numbers as the present studies. Similar studies, also bearing the little numbers, were among the Cassiano drawings in the sale of the collection of Herbert Boone, New York, Sotheby's, 16-17 September, 1988, lots 125-182.
These are on the characteristic mounts made for many of the drawings when they entered the collection of George III.
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