Madonna and Child

Giulio Romano (?1492-1546)

Romano’s ‘Virgin and Child’ is based on Raphael’s ‘Madonna della Sedia’ (Palazzo Pitti, Florence) and was thought to be by Raphael until the end of the 18th century.

The picture was part of the Spanish Royal Collection captured at the Battle of Vitoria, and by the time it came to England the attribution had changed to Romano.

In a letter dated February 1814 to the 1st Duke of Wellington his brother, Lord Maryborough, wrote ‘West (Benjamin West, President of the Royal Academy) said the Correggio and Giulio Romano ought to be framed in diamonds, and that it was worth fighting a battle for’.

Romano was a pupil of Raphael and assisted with the decoration of the papal apartments in the Vatican. He moved to Mantua in 1524 becoming court artist to the 1st Duke of Mantua.