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Tivoli: Temple of the Sibyl and the Campagna - II
Private Collection, France
Ascribed to Wilson
Tivoli: Temple of the Sibyl and the Campagna - II
Oil on canvas
42 x 70 cm
16 1/2 x 27 1/2 in.
Private Collection, France
P143B
The town of Tivoli is seen from the north east across the gorge of the river Aniene (or 'Anio'), with the Roman Campagna and the city of Rome itself in the distance. To the left, on the cliff edge, is a small cluster of ancient buildings. These include the circular Roman Temple of Vesta, and the rectangular Temple of the Tiburtine Sibyl.
Purchased from Beazor, 78-80 Regent Street, Cambridge c. 1967
Unsigned; no inscription
Some of the facture (clouds, figures, trees in right middle ground) is relatively crude and approximate, while other parts are suspiciously precise, thinly painted and 1790s-looking (notably the buildings on the left of the temple).
[1] Punched tape label, inverted, lower left.: YTL FEB 67
[2] Label on stretcher lower centre right obscured by taping
Tivoli is about 20 kilometres from Rome, on the lower slopes of the Sabine Hills. Its finest ruin, the so-called Temple of Vesta, is a circular building dating from the 1st century BC. Situated dramatically above a precipice and cascade, it has been admired by artists since the 16th century because of its picturesque location and became a famous attraction for Grand Tourists.
D217 Tivoli with the Temples of Vesta and the Sibyl and the Grand Cascade, National Museum Wales, Cardiff
D280/10 Italian Sketchbook - Drawings pp. 10(v) and 11(r): The Temples of Vesta and the Sibyl at Tivoli, Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection, New Haven
See 'Links' tab
P45 The Temple of the Sibyl and the Campagna, National Gallery of Ireland, Dublin
The compiler believes this work to be either a late ' breeder' by Wilson or, more likely, a slightly later contemporary copy. Constable, however, thought it to be autograph, though it came to his attention too late to be published.
Until the later C18 the circular temple had been called the |Temple of the Sybil because of the site's ancient connection with the Tiburtine Sybil. It was then demonstrated by Giuseppe Vasi and others to have been a vestal temple and the small adjacent church containing some ancient elements was assumed to have been the Temple of Sybil.
Verso measurements through taping: 37.5 x 65.5 cm (14 3/4 x 25 3/4 in.) Cleaned by Lindsay, Fulham after purchase, and relined.
09/10/2019