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ITALIAN SCHOOL. coco.... GUIDO RENI. oovocoBOLOGNA MUSEUM.
The precursor of Jesus Christ had withdrawn into the desert near the river Jordan , and a great concourse of people went to hear his preaching, and to be baptized in the flood.
In representing St John the Baptist seated upon a rock, indicating with one hand the celestial mission he has received, Guido Reni seems to have had a sort of reminiscence of Raphael's manner of treating the same subject, given at no 91. But the expression and character of the heads are essentially different. Raphael appears to have preserved in St John something of that youthful grace so often displayed by him in his numerous holy families. Guido has given a few more years his personage. Raphael's St John though in the action of preaching is presented quite alone; while Guido surrounds him with a numerous assemblage, who, however, are too distant to be in the reach of the preacher's voice.
Notwithstanding these slight criticisms, the two pictures merit equal admiration; they have been equally well engraved, that of Raphael by Bervic, and this one by Raphael Morghen.