Landscape with Dancing Figures


Francesco Zuccarelli (Italian 1702–1788)


about 1750


Oil on canvas


26 3/8 x 52 1/2 in. (67 x 133.3 cm)


The Tuscan-born landscape painter Francesco Zuccarelli enjoyed a high reputation in both Italy and England, which he visited twice and where, in 1768, he was one of the forty founding members of the Royal Academy. In 1838, the Athenæum purchased this painting, along with eight others, from a dealer named Francesco Celestini who posed as an impoverished Florentine count on a mission to save his family by selling his ancestral art collection in America. The count’s proposal found an appreciative client in the Athenæum, which was eager to enrich its art collection with examples of European works, regardless of whether they were originals or copies. This painting happened to be one of the original works. The count subsequently vanished without a trace.

Credit Line

Athenæum purchase, 1838

Object Number