Date 1873-12-01
Publication Academy
Topic WMR debunks Raphael attribution
AP display
RA display
Subject art
Keywords accuracy
  ↳ context
  ↳ facts
  ↳ probability
Standards context
  ↳ value

Annotation details

73 December Academy


debunks Raphael painting attribution.


Rossetti, William M. "A Supposed Raphael." Academy 4 (1873): 445. Web. 21 Sept. 2011.


Rossetti presents a methodical analysis which he says indicates that the painting "The Three Graces" is not the work of Raphael. Rossetti finds the work admirable and the qualities he discusses that are inherent in the work reinforce the sense of high aesthetic value Rossetti places on the painting.

The first portion of the essay describes the three heads depicted in the painting, comparing them to Raphael's standard: the expressions are average, according to Rossetti, not beautiful, expressive or graceful. The background, too, recalls the style of Raphael, and Rossetti suggests that perhaps the painting was created by a student of Raphael, but not the artist himself.

Rossetti closes with a double meaning, stating that the painting was found by chance in a remote corner of the metropolis, covered with "the dirt and varnish of the years, now cleared away," presumably by Rossetti's argument that the painting was not done by Raphael.


analytic, persuasive, defining, educating


treatment, composition, validity, conception, design

Standards of Judgment:

Rossetti's knowledge of the work of Raphael


Mr. W. King Lucas, Primaticcio, Frances I


evaluative, definitive