Rome of the 18th Century

Some good quotes that I ran across reading about art dealers in Rome during the 18th century:

Thomas Jenkins, a dealer and conoisseur active in Rome, commenting on the papal acquisitions of sculpture for the Vatican collections: “I must have Expressed my Self wrong, if You understood that I meant fine Sculpture only should improve a Museum, I meant the Objects & not the Building should attract the principle Attention, what I have ever Said to Vis[conti] has been, Excellence, Erudition, & Rarity, should be the Objects of His–[choice?], which I believe will nearly combine with Your Ideas. In erudition and rarity are comprehended instruction and numberless objects to gratify the human mind, inabling us to touch and seemingly to live with the ancients.” (218)

Theophile Auguste Vauchelet, Ennio Quirino Visconti, Musée Carnavalet, Paris

“A paraphrase of Ennio Quirino Visconti‘s [son of the above Visconti] definition of archaeology might read as follows: that it derives from a diligent reading of classics and comparison of monuments, good taste in the fine arts, and a deep knowledge of the habits, laws, religion and character of ancient people, a knowledge that is closely related to philosophy.” (199)

Both of these quotes taken from Volume 1 of the fascinating monograph: Bignamini, I. and C. Hornsby. 2010. Digging and Dealing in Eighteenth Century Rome. New Haven: Yale University Press.


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