The old inscription on this drawing attributes the sheet to Nicolas Poussin, though already in 1964, when Joseph McCrindle acquired it, the drawing was given to Allegrini. Allegrini painted many battle scenes over the course of his career. One of his most important works, a fresco cycle executed in the Palazzo del Sant'Uffizio in Rome, included a scene entitled the Battle of Muret. The present drawing pictures a battle scene in the lower register of the composition and a row of seated figures--possibly an assembly of the gods--in the upper portion of the composition. Since the battle scene includes women, it may represent an Amazonomachy. The energetic, agitated lines that define the contours of the figures and the large areas of dark wash, which contrast with the light color of the paper, contribute to the drama and violence of the scene.
ca. 1620-ca. 1679
Fighting Women with a Row of Seated Spectators Above
Pen and brown ink with brown wash on laid paper.
3 13/16 x 5 9/16 inches (97 x 142 mm)
The Joseph F. McCrindle Collection.
Inscribed at lower left in pen and brown ink, "N. Pussino".
John Manning Fine Art, London; from which acquired by Joseph F. McCrindle, New York, April 1964 (McCrindle collection no. A1230).