Carlo Pellegrini

Image credit: National Portrait Gallery, London

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Carlo Pellegrini was born in Italy in 1838. His father came from an ancient land-owning family, while his mother was descended from the Medici. He moved to London in 1864, where he became a favourite member of bohemian and aristocratic circles.
In 1869, Thomas Gibson Bowles employed Pellegrini to produce caricatures for his new society magazine, Vanity Fair. His caricature of Benjamin Disraeli was the first lithograph to appear in the magazine. It was so popular that it helped to establish the idea of the coloured caricature in British magazines. Signing his work 'Ape', Pellegrini continued working for the journal for the rest of his life.

National Portrait Gallery, London



Carlo Pellegrini




oil on canvas


H 40.5 x W 30.4 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Given by Joseph Ceci, 1955

Work type



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