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Curious Objects : Fragments of wall paintings from Pompeii

Curious Objects

<p style='text-align: justify;'>These fragments in the ‘Third’ or ‘Fourth Style’ of Pompeiian wall painting depict a shaggy-fleeced goat, a deer and Pegasus. They were found during research for the exhibition in the cabinet of ‘Oriental’ manuscripts and curiosities presented by George Lewis in 1726, and are among several later additions to the cabinet. On the back of the frame is an inscription in a nineteenth-century hand reading ‘Containing Three Original Antique Paintings from the Walls of Pompeii, near Naples. Near 2000 years old’. A small paper label on the Pegasus records their sale as Lot 61 on the second day of an unidentified auction. Nothing further is yet known about their provenance. Visible-light Induced Luminescence photography has revealed very small specks of the ancient pigment Egyptian blue on all three fragments, either as surface contamination from another object or as transfer from brushes or tools that had also been used for Egyptian blue.</p>

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