Aldo Ravà. Pietro Longhi. Bergamo, 1909, p. 152, as "La tentazione"; reproduces an engraving after it by Gutwein.
"New Acquisitions of Pictures." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 9 (March 1914), pp. 75–77, ill., as on loan from J. Pierpont Morgan; calls it one of a series of nine pictures said to have been in the collection of the Miari family since the eighteenth century; notes that the figure of the old woman is repeated in "The Letter" (MMA 14.32.1).
Ancient Italian Art Treasures of Extraordinary Artistic and Historical Interest. American Art Galleries, New York. December 17–19, 1917, unpaginated, under nos. 441–46, identifies the four MMA paintings, as well as pictures in the National Gallery, London, the Pinacoteca di Brera, Milan, and six works included in this sale catalogue, as from a series of twenty works painted for the Gambardi family of Florence; gives provenance information for the series.
Aldo Ravà. Pietro Longhi. Florence, 1923, p. 153, ill. p. 34, reproduces the Gutwein engraving.
Lionello Venturi. Pitture italiane in America. Milan, 1931, unpaginated, under pl. CCCCXXXI.
Lionello Venturi. Italian Paintings in America. Vol. 3, Sixteenth to Eighteenth Century. New York, 1933, unpaginated, under pl. 602.
Margaret D. Sloane. "A Genre Scene by Longhi." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 31 (March 1936), p. 52, repeats the provenance information given in Ref. Volpi 1917.
Harry B. Wehle. The Metropolitan Museum of Art: A Catalogue of Italian, Spanish, and Byzantine Paintings. New York, 1940, p. 293, ill. p. 295, repeats the provenance information given in Ref. Volpi 1917.
Roberto Longhi. Viatico per cinque secoli di pittura veneziana. Florence, 1946, p. 69, pl. 156.
Marian Davis. "Two Eighteenth Century Paintings: A Fete Galante by Pater and a Scene from Everyday Life by Longhi." Worcester Art Museum Annual 5 (1946), pp. 60–61, accepts the Gambardi provenance and the connection with the London, Milan, and ex-Volpi pictures; dates the series to the artist's middle or late period, 1750–70.
Millia Davenport. The Book of Costume. New York, 1948, vol. 2, p. 727, no. 2035, ill. (cropped).
Antonio Morassi. "Una mostra del Settecento veneziano a Detroit." Arte veneta 7 (1953), p. 55.
Michael Levey. The Eighteenth Century Italian Schools. London, 1956, p. 72 nn. 7, 10, notes that there is no evidence to confirm the provenance given in Ref. Volpi 1917.
Vittorio Moschini. Pietro Longhi. Milan, 1956, p. 22, pl. 66, calls it "La visita al Lord"; gives the date of the engraving as 1749.
Francesco Valcanover. "Affreschi sconosciuti di Pietro Longhi." Paragone 7 (January 1956), p. 25 n. 1, lists the "bellissima" series at the MMA, noting that there are preparatory drawings in the Museo Correr, Venice.
Carlo Donzelli. I pittori veneti del Settecento. Florence, 1957, p. 135.
Rodolfo Pallucchini. La pittura veneziana del Settecento. Venice, 1960, p. 181, fig. 467.
G[iuseppe]. M. Pilo. "Longhi allievo del Balestra." Arte figurativa 9 (January–February 1961), p. 34.
Terisio Pignatti. Pietro Longhi. Venice, 1968, pp. 61, 92–94, pl. 84 [English ed., "Pietro Longhi: Paintings and Drawings," London: Phaidon, 1969, pp. 49, 80, 82, pl. 84], calls it "La visita al lord" ("Milord's Visitor") and dates it about 1746; gives the provenance as the Gambardi collection, Florence; notes that the painting on the back wall, reminiscent of Amigoni, is transformed in Gutwein's engraving (pl. 84a) into a version of Amigoni's "Jupiter and Callisto"; publishes a letter of May 13, 1749 from Longhi to the printer Remondini in which he details alterations to be made to a print, probably Gutwein's engraving of this painting.
Jean Cailleux. "The Literature of Art: The Art of Pietro Longhi." Burlington Magazine 111 (September 1969), p. 567, dates Gutwein's engraving 1748–49.
Michael Levey. The Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century Italian Schools. London, 1971, p. 154 nn. 9, 14.
Terisio Pignatti. "Aggiunte per Pietro Longhi." Arte illustrata 5 (January 1972), p. 3.
Burton B. Fredericksen and Federico Zeri. Census of Pre-Nineteenth-Century Italian Paintings in North American Public Collections. Cambridge, Mass., 1972, pp. 108, 496, 606.
Federico Zeri with the assistance of Elizabeth E. Gardner. Italian Paintings: A Catalogue of the Collection of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Venetian School. New York, 1973, pp. 38–39, pl. 42, call the painting on the rear wall "apparently a Venetian work of the seventeenth century, recalling the manner of Pietro Liberi".
Fern Rusk Shapley. Paintings from the Samuel H. Kress Collection. Vol. 3, Italian Schools: XVI–XVIII Century. London, 1973, pp. 136–37, under no. K393, dates all four pictures 1746, finding them "completely homogenous in style".
Terisio Pignatti. L'opera completa di Pietro Longhi. Milan, 1974, pp. 88, 94, no. 45, ill. p. 89 and colorpls. XIX, XX (overall and detail).
Vittorio Sgarbi. Pietro Longhi: i dipinti di Palazzo Leoni Montanari. Milan, 1982, p. 8, dates it 1746.
Philip L. Sohm. "Pietro Longhi and Carlo Goldoni: Relations Between Painting and Theater." Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte 45, no. 3 (1982), pp. 272–73, fig. 12, discusses the gesture of the servant, which both introduces the young woman and points to her groin, as an example of Longhi's use of ambiguous gestures; believes these gestures to have libidinous meanings, here referring either to "the young woman's sexual availability or perhaps the growing consequences of a past affair".
Rolf Bagemihl. "Pietro Longhi and Venetian Life." Metropolitan Museum Journal 23 (1988), pp. 233, 239, 241–43, fig. 11, calls it "The Collation"; interprets the scene as a procuress and her prostitute, a gentleman and his servant, and a "barcarol" (gondolier) acting as go-between.
Filippo Pedrocco. "Iconografia delle cortigiane di Venezia." Il gioco dell'amore: le cortigiane di Venezia dal Trecento al Settecento. Exh. cat., Casinò Municipale, Venice. Milan, 1990, p. 92.
Giorgio Fossaluzza et al. in Pietro Longhi. Exh. cat., Museo Correr, Venice. Milan, 1993, pp. 20, 37, 114, 130, no. 55, ill. p. 115 (color), fig. 8 (detail).
Marianne Roland Michel. Chardin. Paris, 1994, p. 253 [English ed., New York, 1996].
Jean Strouse. "J. Pierpont Morgan, Financier and Collector." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 57 (Winter 2000), p. 32, fig. 35 (color) and ill. inside back cover (cropped, color), states that the series was executed for the Gambardi family in 1746.
Katharine Baetjer in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York: Chefs-d'œuvre de la peinture européenne. Exh. cat., Fondation Pierre Gianadda. Martigny, 2006, p. 52 [Catalan ed., Barcelona, 2006, p. 36].
Old Master Paintings: Part I. Christie's, New York. January 28, 2015, p. 132, under no. 48.