Object Image

Young Satyr gathering Grapes

A naked young satyr, just like a little boy but with pointed ears and a curly tail, swings from a vine to pick grapes. This irregularly shaped panel was part of a musical instrument, probably a kind of harpsichord. Together with Silenus gathering Grapes it would have formed the inside of the lid, visible when the instrument was open, with this boy facing his 'twin' swinging on the vines in the larger panel. It was painted by Annibale Carracci, possibly for Fulvio Orsini, the classical scholar and librarian to the Farnese family.

These three panels were originally part of an early keyboard instrument, or possibly a pair of instruments, and show scenes of music-making and drinking. Silenus gathe...

Oil and egg on wood
54.5 x 88.5cm
Image and text © The National Gallery, London, 2023

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