John Ruskin described this painting as 'an entirely priceless example of excellent painting, exemplary for all time'.

It has suffered extensive damage and undergone a number of restorations, but remains a work of great beauty, epitomising that crucial period in the history of Western art, the early Renaissance in Florence. The picture was attributed to Verrocchio by the time Ruskin bought it but, since then, its poor condition and extensive overpainting have led art-historians to dispute its authorship. Berenson, however, regarded it as a masterpiece emanating from Verrocchio's work shop and the suggestion has been made that it is at least partly from the hand of the young Leonardo when he was working in Verrocchio's studio.


Manfini Collection; John Ruskin;Museum of the Guild of St George.

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