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Anthony and Cleopatra
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Anthony and Cleopatra


Guercino (1591 - 1666)

Pen and ink on paper

Height: 26 cm; Width: 21.4 cm;

Numbered in graphite, lower left & recto, 1

Acquisition (source, method, date)
Witt, Robert Clermont (Sir); bequest; 1952

About this work
In this pen and ink drawing Guercino imagines the encounter of the Roman emperor Augustus and Cleopatra, vanquished queen of Egypt. Despite the isolation of the figures, their emphatic gestures and postures give a clear sense of the narrative. Proud Cleopatra respectfully addresses the victorious ruler who reacts in a haughty manner. The impact of the scene is heightened by the realistic details and textures of clothing, jewellery and hair that enliven the characters. (Permanent collection label)

Copyright: © The Samuel Courtauld Trust, The Courtauld Gallery, London

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