The Judgment of Paris; he is sitting at left with Venus, Juno and Pallas Athena, a winged victory above; in the upper section the Sun in his chariot preceeded by Castor and Pollux on horseback; at lower right two river gods and a naiad above whom Jupiter, an eagle, Ganymede, Diana and another Goddess
Marcantonio Raimondi (Italian, Argini (?) ca. 1480–before 1534 Bologna (?))
After Raphael (Raffaello Sanzio or Santi) (Italian, Urbino 1483–1520 Rome)
Sheet: 11 7/16 x 17 3/16 in. (29.1 x 43.7 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1919
Not on view
A masterpiece of Renaissance printmaking, the Judgment of Paris represents a highpoint in the collaboration between the painter Raphael and the great Italian engraver Raimondi. This scene is one of a group of exceptional compositions Raphael designed specifically for Marcantonio to engrave, which, according to Giorgio Vasari, 'amazed all of Rome.' It demonstrates the meticulously ordered systems of hatching that Marcantonio developed to achieve the richest possible tonal effects, which was to influence generations of engravers. Depicted here is the incident that sparked the Trojan War: Paris being forced to decide which goddess—Juno, Minerva, or Venus—was the most beautiful. He chose Venus, seen receiving the golden apple upon promising to help him woo the most beautiful woman alive, Helen of Troy. Recognized by Vasari as one of Marcantonio's early Roman works of 1510-1511, and this date was supported by Delaborde; Shoemaker dated it between 1517-1520; more recently, Mason and Oberhuber date it between 1515-1516.
Inscription: Lettered within plate lower left of center, monogram 'MAF' followed by 'RAPH. VRBI / INVEN', at lower left on block 'SORDENT PRARE FORMA / INGENIVM. VIRTVS. / REGNA. AVRVM'
Marking: Collector's mark belonging to Earl Spencer (Lugt 1532) recto at the lower right
Collection of Earls Spencer (Althorp, Northamptonshire, England); Vendor: P. & D. Colnaghi & Co.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," April 5, 1993–July 12, 1993.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," April 14, 1997–July 20, 1997.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," January 5, 1998–March 8, 1998.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," February 26, 2013–May 20, 2013.
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "The Power of Prints: The Legacy of William M. Ivins and A. Hyatt Mayor," January 26, 2016–May 22, 2016.
Bartsch XIV.197.245; Delaborde 1887, no.114; Shoemaker and Broun 1981, no.43 (first state of two)
Henri Delaborde Marc Antonio Raimondi étude historique et critique, suivie d'un catalogue raisonné des ouevres du maitre. Paris, 1887.
Innis Shoemaker, Elizabeth Broun The Engravings of Marcantonio Raimondi. Lawrence, 1981.
Grazia Bernini Pezzini, Stefania Massari, Simonetta Prosperi Valenti Rodinò Raphael Invenit: stampe da Raffaello nelle collezioni dell'Istituto Nazionale per la Grafica Exh. cat. Rome, Istituto Nazionale per la Grafica. Quasar , Rome, Rome, 1985, cat. no. Mito II.1, p. 242, ill.
Stefania Massari Tra mito e allegoria: immagini a stampa nel '500 e '600. Rome, 1989, cat. no. 7, pp. 22-29, ill.
Clay Dean, Theresa Fairbanks, Lisa Pon, Yale University Art Gallery Changing Impressions: Marcantonio Raimondi and Sixteenth-Century Print Connoisseurship. Exh. cat. Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, December 14, 1999 - February 13, 2000, cat. no. 24, p. 78.