Signed "H. Gravelot inven" in ink at lower right.
Kraemer, Ruth S. "Drawings by Gravelot for Alessandro Tassoni's mock-heroic poem La secchia rapita." Master drawings, XXVIII (Autumn 1990), p. 338-343, no. 18.
Gravelot's design is preparatory for an illustration to Canto XII in an edition of Alessandro Tassoni's "Secchia rapita" (“The Stolen Bucket”), published in Paris by Lorenzo Prault and Pietro Durand in 1766. Tassoni's mock-heroic poem, originally published in Paris in 1622, blends the construct of an epic with an absurd premise: a 14th century war between Modena and Bologna was actually caused by the Modenese stealing a bucket from Bologna. The corresponding plate appears facing p. 179 in volume 2 of the published work and is captioned “E gli diede la spada, e'l pastorale”. The scene shows the Pope dispatching the Cardinal Messer Ottaviano as legate to negotiate an end to the war between Modena and Bologna.
Ray, Gordon Norton, 1915-1986, former owner.