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The title of this painting originates from the idea that it portrays Diego Velázquez at the Spanish court, surrounded by royal personages and prominent humanists. The main figures in Velázquez’s Las Meninas (Prado Museum, Madrid) – including Velázquez himself and the young Spanish princess Margarita – were believed to be the central protagonists in this painting too.
The painting was thought to be by Velázquez in the nineteenth century, when it was owned by the British artist Sir Edwin Landseer. He, like others, must have admired the work for its confident handling of paint and sketch-like quality – the leaping spaniel in the foreground is a particularly lively detail.
The National Gallery, London
A Homage to Velázquez
Oil on canvas
H 205.2 x W 182.2 cm
Presented by Lord Savile, 1895