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Provenance

Probably commissioned by Thomas, 5th baron King [1712-1779], London and Ockham Park, Surrey;[1] by descent at Ockham Park to Peter Malcolm, 4th earl of Lovelace [1905-1964]; (his sale, Sotheby's, London, 13 July 1937, no. 133); purchased by (M. Knoedler & Co., London);[2] purchased 1938 by Philip Hill; Mrs. Philip Hill [later Mrs. Warwick Bryant] until 1959.[3] (Rosenberg & Stiebel, New York); purchased December 1960 by Paul Mellon, Upperville, Virginia;[4] gift 1964 to NGA.

Exhibition History
1959
Canaletto in England, Guildhall, London, 1959, no. 4.
1964
Extended loan for use by Ambassador David K.E. Bruce, U.S. Embassy residence, London, England, 1964-1969 (on loan to Embassy when given to NGA; lent prior to 1964 by Paul Mellon).
1969
Extended loan to the Ambassador, U.S. Embassy residence, Brussels, Belgium, 1969-1972.
1972
Extended loan to the Ambassador, U.S. Embassy residence, Rome, Italy, 1972-1977.
1989
Canaletto, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1989-1990, no. 75.
1993
Canaletto & England, Birmingham Gas Hall Exhibition Gallery, England, 1993-1994, no. 37, repro., as Capriccio: river landscape with a ruin and reminiscences of England.
1994
The Glory of Venice: Art in the Eighteenth Century, Royal Academy of Arts, London; National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.; Museo del Settecento Veneziano - Ca'Rezzonico, Venice, 1994-1995, not in cat. (shown only in Washington in 1995).
2006
Canaletto in England: A Venetian Artist Abroad, 1746-1755, Yale Center for British Art, New Haven; Dulwich Picture Gallery, London, 2006 -2007, no. 70, repro.
Bibliography
1938
Finberg, Hilda F. "The Lovelace Canalettos." The Burlington Magazine 72 (February 1938): 69-70, pl. II [A].
1962
Constable, William George. Canaletto: Giovanni Antonio Canal, 1697-1768. 2 vols. Oxford, 1962: 1:pl. 87; 2:413, no. 473.
1965
Summary Catalogue of European Paintings and Sculpture. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1965: 22, as Landscape Capriccio with Palace.
1967
Eeles, Adrian. Canaletto. London, 1967: 37, color pl. 44.
1968
European Paintings and Sculpture, Illustrations. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1968: 14, repro., as Landscape Capriccio with Palace.
1968
Puppi, Lionello. The Complete Paintings of Canaletto. Milan, 1968: 117, repro., no. 307.
1972
Fredericksen, Burton B., and Federico Zeri. Census of Pre-Nineteenth Century Italian Paintings in North American Public Collections. Cambridge, Mass., 1972: 43.
1975
European Paintings: An Illustrated Summary Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1975: 52, repro., as Landscape Capriccio with Palace.
1976
Constable and Links 1976, 1: pl. 87; 2: 445, no. 473.
1977
Links, J. G. Canaletto and His Patrons. London, 1977: 76-77, pl. 113.
1979
Shapley, Fern Rusk. Catalogue of the Italian Paintings. 2 vols. Washington, 1979: 1:105-106, 2:pl. 72, as Landscape Capriccio with Palace.
1982
Links, J. G. Canaletto. Oxford, 1982: 192, pl. 185.
1985
Corboz, André. Canaletto: Una Venezia immaginaria. Catalogue compiled by Anna Tortorelo. 2 vols. Milan, 1985: 2:704, repro., no. P 367.
1985
European Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1985: 73, repro.
1989
Baetjer, Katharine, and J. G. Links. Canaletto. Exh. cat. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 1989: 256-259, no. 75.
1989
Constable, W. G. Canaletto: Giovanni Antonio Canal, 1697-1768. 2nd edition revised by J. G. Links, reissued with supplement and additional plates. 2 vols. Oxford, 1989: 1:pl. 87; 2:445, no. 473.
1993
Liversidge, Michael, and Jane Farrington. Canaletto & England. Exh. cat. Birmingham Gas Hall Exhibition Gallery, Birmingham, 1993: 26, 27, 99, color repro. 98.
1993
Russell, Francis. "A Suffusion of Light." Country Life 187 (14 October 1993): 64.
1996
De Grazia, Diane, and Eric Garberson, with Edgar Peters Bowron, Peter M. Lukehart, and Mitchell Merling. Italian Paintings of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1996: 35-39, color repro. 37.
Technical Summary

The support is a plain-weave, medium-weight fabric. The thread count differs slightly from the support of the pendant (1964.2.1) and confirms that different rolls of fabric were used for each. A thin white ground was employed and is visible at the edges of the paint surface. The paint was applied wet-over-dry with only a few small passages painted wet-into-wet. The composition was built up from the middle ground, with each compositional detail completed before the addition of subsequent pictorial elements above; completed architecture or landscape can often be detected under the figures or other foreground details. The figures were sketched quickly with a dark wash that was allowed to dry before color was added over it using a thicker, opaque paint, with a lighter hue for the highlighted areas and a darker tone of the same color for the shadows. The highlights were applied more thickly. Some red pigment was added to create a warmer tonality in the sky. X-radiographs reveal no compositional changes.

The tacking margins have been removed, but cusping along the vertical edges suggests that the painting retains its original dimensions. There are small losses in the lower-right corner. Slight abrasion is evident in the thinly painted areas of the distant landscape. The varnish is slightly yellowed. The painting, which was lined at an unknown date, has not been treated since acquisition.