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Massacre of the Innocents
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Massacre of the Innocents

Formerly attributed to Alonso Cano (1601-1667)

Circle of Esteban March (c.1610-c.1668)

Pen and brown ink and wash over black chalk on paper

Height: 16.3 cm; Width: 19.8 cm;

In graphite, verso, crossed out, Mo / Let ? //

In graphite, verso, Mo 4 12a //
In different brown ink, lower left & recto, Alonso Cano //

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

About this work
Collectors of Spanish drawings greatly admired the works of Alonso Cano, which accounts for the incorrect attribution of this scene to him in the inscription. Instead, the composition, dominated by a strong diagonal, and the particularly aggressive rendering of the violent subject, showing a mother’s brave effort to protect her son from being murdered by a powerful soldier, is characteristic of the Valencian artist Esteban March, whose early biographers commented upon his furious temper and his preference for battle scenes. (Permanent collection label)

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

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