Artibus et Historiae no. 23 (XII)

1991, ISSN 0391-9064

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CECIL GOULD - A Major Attribution to the Young Raphael

Before its recent restoration, the Portrait of a Youth was published in 1987 as a work by Bugiardini dating from about 1525-30. As this article makes clear, such a dating is unacceptable. The costume is precisely like that in Raphael's Portrait of Angelo Doni, which dates from 1504-08. There, too, Doni's hair is shoulder-length, not a fashionable style for young men by 1525.

The attribution to Bugiardini also appears to be mistaken. The stylistic similarities with Raphael's portrait La Donna Gravida suggest that the Youth is in fact a Raphael of c. 1507-08. Raphael repeated the device of the straight lines produced by folds in the background wall-covering when he painted Pope Julius II in 1511-12.

A seal removed from the back of the Youth proves that in the eighteenth century the picture was in the collection of the Earls of Chesterfield.

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