Nicholas Turner suggested at the time of the sale in 2000 that this finely-detailed red-chalk drawing should be dated to the late 1630s or early 1640s, at which time Guercino executed a number of half-length pictures of Saint Jerome, according to entries in his Libro dei Conti. The saint's twisting pose and the powerful treatment of the musculature of his arm are similar to a drawing at the University of Iowa Museum of Art, which was identified by David Stone as a study of Saint Jerome and the Angel, and dated on the basis of its style to circa 1641 (inv. 1968.67; Guercino: Master Draftsman, exhib. cat., Harvard, University Art Museums, and elsewhere, 1991, no. 45).
Signature: With inscription 'Guercino'
THE PROPERTY OF A GENTLEMAN
John Skippe (his mount), with his numbering 'A/Z.135', though not traceable in the 1958 sale at Christie's London.
Anonymous sale; Sotheby's, London, 15 June 1983, lot 60.
Anonymous sale; Sotheby's, New York, 26 January 2000, lot 19, where acquired by the present owner.
About Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, called Guercino
Italian, 1591-1666, Cento, Italy, based in Rome and Bologna