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Cupid on Horseback

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Cupid on Horseback


Fanelli, Francesco (sculptor) [ULAN info: Italian sculptor, 1577-1661/64]






Copper alloy, probably brass, cast and chased

Copper alloy, probably brass, cast. Wingless Cupid is seated on a galloping horse with a lionskin as a saddle. His arms are raised as if prepared to fire an arrow, the remains of the bow in his left hand. Beneath the horse is a dog, it's head lifted as if to bite at the horse. All on a bronze base.

Production Notes

Francesco Fanelli was last documented in England 1641

Production Place

London (sculptor) (place)

England (sculptor) (country)

Italian (sculptor) (nationality)

Technique Description

copper alloy, probably brass, cast


height: (whole): 15.5 cm
length: (whole): 20.5 cm


mid-late 17th Century


after 1630 to 1700


given: The Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum 1962 (Filtered for: Applied Arts collection)

J. Goldschmidt, Warrington Crescent, London, N9.

Given by the Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum


  1. (1962) Friends of the Fitzwilliam Museum, Fifty-fourth Annual Report, for the Year 1962, Cambridge (Cambs.) [page: p. 2]
    [comments: Publ. p. 2]
  2. Avery, Victoria (2002) Renaissance and Baroque Bronzes from the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, London: Gli Ori [page: pp. 164-7]
    [comments: Publ. pp. 164-167, 269-270, no. 22]
  3. Pope-Hennessy, John Some Bronze Statuettes by F. Fanelli, [page: 157-62]
    Source title: Burlington Magazine (1953)
    [comments: Ref. Cf. pl. 15, Cupid on Horseback, but without the dog, in the Victoria and Albert Museum (A.37-1952)]
  4. Hackenbroch, Yvonne Bronzes in the Leon Bagrit Collection,
    Source title: Connoisseur (June 1957)
    [comments: Ref.]
  5. Watney, Bernard (1957) Longton Hall Porcelain, London: Faber & Faber
    [comments: Cf. An example of this bronze was used as a model by the Longton Hall porcelain factory. See pl. 31B.]
  6. Christie's (1971) Fine Sculpture and Works of Art, London? [page: p. 36] 6th April 1971)
    [comments: Cf. Lot 125, the property of Mrs James W. Johnson, another version of this bronze, also with the dog.]
  7. Christie's (1991) Important European Sculpture and Works of Art, London: Christie's [page: p. 54] 10 December 1991)
    [comments: Cf. Another with dog, p. 54, lot 98 (Estimate £10,000-15,000)]
  8. Sotheby's London (2007) European Sculpture & Works of Art, London: Sotheby's [page: 118] 6 July 2007)
    [comments: Cf. p. 118, lot 108, a late 17th or early 18th century cast without the dog. Estimate £3-5,000.]
  9. Katz, Daniel (2007) A Collector's Cabinet, London: Daniel Katz Ltd
    [comments: Cf. no. 13, Cupid on Horseback without the dog, asking price £12,000]

Other Notes

There is a version of this in the Victoria and Albert Museum (without the dog) and in the British Museum.

Accession Number

M.1-1962 (Applied Arts)
(Reference Number: 13962; Input Date: 2000-10-09 / Last Edit: 2011-07-22)

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