Apollo and the Cumaean Sibyl
after Claude Lorrain (Champagne 1600 – Rome 1682)
Oil painting on canvas, Apollo and the Cumaean Sibyl, after Claude Lorrain (Champagne 1600 – Rome 1682). A arcadian scene with a ruined building, the castellum of the Aqua Martia, at the left and two trees to the right and an extensive plain stretches into the background. In the foreground, in the centre, the seated sibyl is showing Apollo the handful of sand, each grain of which marks a year in her life and he is promising to let her live as many years as there are grains but she refused his advances and he condemned her to live as a miserable old woman. This is a version of the original painting painted for Cardinal Massimi in circa 1646-47 and later in the collection of the Earl of Orford, sold with the Houghton pictures, and now in the Hermitage, St Petersberg.
Lord Northwick (seen by Waagen, 1854 at Thirlestane House); sale Phillips, 26th July ff 18.., lot 44, bought Erle-Drax; in herited by J. Sawbridge-Erle-Drax, his sale, Christie's, 28th June 1929, lot 91, (as sunset, to Rothschild, dealer); Anon. sale Christie's 7th May 1943, with Northwick provenance, (to Fischer, cheap); gift of Sir John Heathcoat Amory (1894-1972) and Lady Amory (1901 -1997) to the National Trust at Knightshayes Court in 1997.
Knightshayes Court, The Heathcote-Amory Collection (National Trust)
Makers and roles
after Claude Lorrain (Champagne 1600 – Rome 1682), artist
Waagen 1854-7 Gustav Waagen, Treasures of Art in Great Britain, 3 vols. (translated by Lady Eastlake) with a supplementary volume: Galleries and Cabinets of Art in Great Britain, London, 1854-7, III, p.198, no. 6 Röthlisberger 1961 Marcel Röthlisberger, Claude Lorraine, The Paintings, 2 vols, New Haven, 1961 , I, p. 262 Godfrey 1965 F. M. Godfrey, 'Heathcoat-Amory Collection', Apollo, LXXXII, 1965, p. 141-3