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Italian Bronze Model Sleeping Lion 19th Century after Antonio Canova Grand Tour

Italian Bronze Model Sleeping Lion 19th Century after Antonio Canova Grand Tour

circa 1820
5.30cm high (2.09 inches high)
9.40cm wide (3.70 inches wide)
3.20cm deep (1.26 inches deep)
Description / Expertise
- Beautifully modelled and cast
- Atmospheric reference to the iconic original lions
- Grand Tour collectible

An Italian bronze model of a sleeping lion, early-19th century. Modelled after Antonio Canova. On rectangular bronze base.

The monumental tomb of Clement XIII is by Antonio Canova, who worked on it from 1783 to 1792. It shows the pope kneeling in prayer with the tiara beside him, and to the left of the sarcophagus Religion dressed in Jewish sacerdotal garments; to the right, there is a semi-reclining funerary Genius. At the base are two crouching lions, one sleeping, the other vigilant. They are carved in travertine, while the rest of the monument is of white Carrara marble. Canova personally created everything, preparing various studies and models (which preserved in his birthplace of Possagno del Grappa). The two superb lions, are one of the most beautiful creations by Canova. The awake lion, on the left, represents the energetic work of the Pope while the sleeping lion, on the right, symbolizes his moderation.

The lions were much copied in various sizes and mediums and sought after by English Gentlemen on the Grand Tour.

Measures: Height 5.3cm
Width 9.4cm
Depth 3.2cm.
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