Pictures of Sibyls enjoyed great favour in Italian baroque art as they provided artists with a respectable excuse to depict beautiful young women in exotic dress. Domenichino is known to have painted at least two other Sibyls: one with an attribute of Music and another holding a Greek scroll, now respectively in the Pinacoteca Capitolina and the Borghese Gallery, Rome. The three closely related works depict attractive women in rich exotic costumes with elaborate head-dresses. The picture belonged to the Regent of France, Philippe duc d’Orléans (1674–1723) and later to his descendant Philippe-Egalité, duc d’Orléans (1747–1793). It was bought by the 4th Marquess of Hertford ‘as much for the frame as for the picture’ at the sale of the 2nd Duke of Buckingham in 1848 (the frame the painting was purchased in may be that now on Emilian School P541).
Where to see this painting?
The Wallace Collection
Not all paintings are on display. If you want to see a particular painting, please contact the collection