- Listed: January 1, 1970 12:00 am
- Title: An Allegory of the months of July and August
- Artist: Circle of Paul Bril
- Format (cm): 77.8 x 104.1 cm.
- Format (in): 30 5/8 x 41 in.
- Last Sale price: 75 000,00
- Last Sale date:
Circle of Paul Bril (Antwerp c. 1554-1626 Rome) An Allegory of the months of July and August oil on panel 30 5/8 x 41 in. (77.8 x 104.1 cm.)
(Probably) Purchased by William Smith, Rome, 1626, on behalf of Thomas Howard, 2nd Earl of Arundel, and by descent to Aletheia, Countess of Arundel, and by descent to William Howard, The Earl of Stafford, Stafford House, London, and by desecent to Edward Howard, 9th Duke of Norfolk, Norfolk House, London and by descent to Sir Bernard Marmaduke Fitzalan-Howard, 16th Duke of Norfolk; Christie’s, London, 11 February 1938, lot 88, as ‘A. Grimmer’ (sold with another picture for 220 gns. to H. Davis). with Arthur Tooth & Sons, London until 1943. Marion Davies; (+), Parke-Bernet, New York, 14 November 1951, lot 51, as Paul Bril.
PROPERTY FROM A VIRGINIA COLLECTION
Inventory of Pictures, Drawings and Objets de Vertu Collected by Thomas and Aletheia, Earl and Countess of Arundel, ms., Amsterdam, 1655, no. 130 (‘Paolo Fiamengho’); see M. Hervey, The Life of Thomas Howard, Earl of Arundel , London, 1921, p. 479. A Catalogue of Pictures, Prints…being part of the old Arundel Collection…belonging to the late Earl of Stafford at Stafford House, Westminster , ms., 1720. Catalogue of All and Singular Pictures found in Norfolk House, St. James Sq., at the Decease of Edwd, the late Duke of Norfolk , ms., London, 11 November 1777, nos. B.1 and B.16 (as ‘Momper’ and ‘Brueghel’).
Belonging to the 16th-century Flemish tradition of series of works depicting the months of the year–employed most famously by Pieter Bruegel I–this verdant summer landscape has an exceptional provenance. In the 1655 inventory of the collection of prominent 17th-century collector Thomas Howard, 2nd Earl of Arundel (1585-1646), this work and three others in the series are listed as the work of ‘Paolo Fiamengho’, the Italianized moniker of the legendary Antwerp landscape painter working in Rome Paul Bril (Hervey, loc. cit. ). The group was most likely purchased for Arundel en bloc in Rome in 1626 by his agent William Smith (see D. Howarth, Arundel and his Circle , New Haven and London, 1984, pp. 56, 231). The series, Twelve Months , descended together through the Howard family, were on view at Norfolk House in 1756, and eventually sold and dispersed in 1938. The series probably dates from the beginning of the 17th century, as related drawings by Bril housed in the Louvre are dated 1598 (see inv. 19784-19792) and similar, but not exact, compositions are found in an engraving by Aegidius Sadeler from 1615 (see Hollstein, Dutch and Flemish Etchings, Engravings and Woodcuts, c. 1450-1700 , Amsterdam, 1980, XXII, nos. 123-128). Other paintings in the series include March/April (Sotheby’s, London, 30 November 1983, lot 65, as ‘Sebastien Vrancx’); May/June (Christie’s, London, 5 July 1985, lot 4, as ‘Sebastien Vrancx’); January/February and November/December (Sotheby’s, New York, 15 January 1993, lot 26, as ‘Paul Bril’ for $266,500).