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Salvator Rosa

Philosophy . Salvator Rosa

about 1645
Oil on canvas
116.3 x 94 cm

London, National Gallery

Acquisition credit Presented by the 6th Marquis of Lansdowne in memory of his father, 1933
Inventory number NG4680
Location Room 32
Art route(s) B

A man with a tablet bearing a Latin inscription , it reads: ‘Keep silent, unless your speech is better than silence.’ The phrase is taken from Stobaeus’s Anthologia, a fifth-century collection of extracts from Greek authors. Recent scholarship has shown that the figure was originally painted as a personification of philosophy.


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