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A very good 19 th century copy after Titian, by a talented Italian school artist. Presented in a superb period gilt composite Florentine frame.
Sacred and Profane Love is an oil painting by Tiziano Vecellio, called Titian, painted early in his career in 1515. The painting is presumed to have been commissioned by Niccolò Aurelio, a secretary to the Venetian Council of Ten, whose coat of arms appears on the sarcophagus or fountain, to celebrate his marriage to a young widow, Laura Bagarotto. It perhaps depicts a figure representing the bride dressed in white, sitting beside Cupid and accompanied by the goddess Venus.
Titian’s original grand scale painting was bought in 1608 by Cardinal Scipione Borghese, nephew of Pope Paul V and a major collector and patron of art. It is now kept in the Villa Borghese, Rome (see H. Wethey, The Paintings of Titian, vol. III, The Mythological and Historical Paintings, London 1975, pp. 175-179, cat. no. 33, reproduced plate 20).
Provenance: Sold Sotheby’s, Old Master Paintings, 12th February 2008, lot 16, £8,125. The painting and frame have since been professionally restored.