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The First Entrance to the Cuniculo
The Trustees of the British Museum
Ascribed to Wilson
The First Entrance to the Cuniculo
c.1752-56 (undated)
Black chalk, touched with white, on grey-buff paper
263 x 379 mm
10 3/8 x 14 15/16 in.
Oo,5.7
NWD108/1
An archway can been seen cut in the rock, with a projecting arch of brick built on, leading to a hollow chamber, mounded up with earth. Before it are two peasants, one sitting and one standing.
Bequeathed by Richard Payne Knight, 1824
Inscribed on the right:
[1] In ink: the first Entrance towards | the Cuniculo near a quarter | of a mile up the mountain | and above a mile distant | from the Lake
[2] In black chalk: you see [illegible word] these | sketches were done | in [illegible word]
haste -
[3] In graphite: Wilson
The tunnel was made by the Romans in AD 52 in order to drain the Lacus Fucius
Pace the setting and the provenance the drawing style argues against Wilson himself as the artist, nor is the inscription in his hand. This is one of several drawings of the Emissario and its environs by the same hand (see also NWD107 Outlet of the Emissario and NWD108 Entrance to the Cuniculo, both in the British Museum and with the same provenance).
Binyon 32
02/03/2016