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Here Vertumnus, the god of gardens, is masquerading as an old woman in order to woo Pomona, the notoriously chaste goddess of orchards. The story, from Ovid’s ‘Metamorphoses’, was well-known in the seventeenth century. Fetti has chosen to depict the moment before Pomona fell in love with the handsome Vertumnus, when he threw off his disguise. Fetti worked mainly in Mantua, where he was court painter to Ferdinando Gonzaga. He specialised in small-scale paintings.

The Courtauld, London (Samuel Courtauld Trust)



Vertumnus and Pomona




oil on copper


H 18.7 x W 25.7 cm

Accession number


Acquisition method

Princes Gate bequest, 1978

Work type



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The Courtauld, London (Samuel Courtauld Trust)

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