John Brown

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John Brown
The Dagger Merchant. Verso: faint sketches of a lizard and the back of a woman
Brush and black ink and wash with graphite; verso: graphite.
10 1/8 x 12 1/2 inches (258 x 318 mm)
Thaw Collection.

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Numbered in graphite at upper right corner, "56".

Léonce Suzor, Paris; Mr. and Mrs. Eugene V. Thaw, New York.

The Morgan Library & Museum, New York, NY, "Drawn to Greatness: Master Drawings from the Thaw Collection", 2017. Exh. cat., no. 26, repr.
Stampfle, Felice, and Cara D. Denison. Drawings from the Collection of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene V. Thaw. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1975, no. 69.
Ryskamp, Charles, ed. Sixteenth Report to the Fellows of the Pierpont Morgan Library, 1969-1971. New York : Pierpont Morgan Library, 1973, p. 110.


Watermark: none.
In 1773, Brown, a Scottish draftsman, arrived in Rome after several years touring southern Italy with the wealthy antiquarian Charles Townley. In the city, Brown soon joined the cosmopolitan group of painters--comprising British, Swiss, French, and Danish artists--that made up the circle of Henry Fuseli. All of these artists shared Fuseli's interest in the darker side of Roman life. In this characteristic wash drawing, Brown depicted a man on the back streets of Rome hawking stilettos, the weapon of choice for any self-respecting Italian bravo. -- Exhibition Label, from "Drawn to Greatness: Master Drawings from the Thaw Collection"

Associated names: 

Suzor, Léonce, former owner.
Thaw, Eugene Victor, former owner.
Thaw, Clare, former owner.

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