National Gallery of Art - THE COLLECTION
image of The Prefect Raffaele Raggi Sir Anthony van Dyck (artist)
Flemish, 1599 - 1641
The Prefect Raffaele Raggi, c. 1625
oil on canvas
overall: 131 x 105.4 cm (51 9/16 x 41 1/2 in.)
Widener Collection
On View
From the Tour: Sir Anthony van Dyck
Object 8 of 15

The Prefect Raffaele Raggi is identified by a crest at the upper right. This image is Van Dyck's first portrait of a deceased sitter. In 1528 this prefect had gained the Raggi family's admission into the nobility of Genoa, and his descendants must have requested this posthumous portrait to emphasize their lineage. Van Dyck, however, did not attempt to create an actual ancestor likeness; he undoubtedly used a living model to add vivacity to the face. Moreover, the armor is that of Van Dyck's own time, not of the early sixteenth century when the subject lived.

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