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Studio of Leonardo da Vinci (1452 - 1519):
St John the Baptist

A503; oil on panel; 75 x 53.4 cm.

Prov: F.R. Leyland; W.G. Waters.

Presented by Dr Arthur Waters, 1937; WA1937.102.

Lloyd 1977, pp. 91-3; Marani 1989, under no. 12A.

The idea of an angel pointing upwards indicating the Incarnation of Christ, originates with Leonardo c. 1506-8 and appears in paintings by his studio and followers. While A503 is close in design to a version at Basle, the figure here is not an angel, but St John, identifiable by his animal skin robe. Leonardo also painted St John the Baptist c. 1509 with a soft, atmospheric chiaroscuro (Louvre, Paris). A503 may be an adaptation by a Milanese follower of both motifs into a composite image.

Order a Reproduction of this image.

Information derived from the Ashmolean Museum's Complete Illustrated Catalogue of Paintings.

Link to the BBC's Your Paintings page of the Public Catalogue Foundation