Terrace at Villa Muti, Frascati

Terrace at Villa Muti, Frascati


Thomas Hartley Cromek (1809-1873)
The Terrace of the Villa Muti, Frascati

Inscribed verso: From Thos H. Cromek/to Capt Cheney/Villa Muti Frascati/3 June 1832 and on part of former mount: Terrace of the Villa Muti at Frascati given to me by T.H. Cromek/1832
Watercolour over pencil
14.2 by 22.6 cm., 5 ½ by 8 ¾ in.

Given by the artist to Captain Cheney of Badger Hall, Shropshire, 1832

The Villa Muti is located to the south-west of Frascati, which is 15 miles south-east of Rome. It was originally built by Ludovico Cerasoli in 1579 and was then acquired by Cardinal Pompeo Arrigoni in 1595. It passed through the Cesarini and Amadei families before being acquired by the Muti family in the nineteenth century. The villa was used as a country residence by Henry Stuart (1725-1807), the final Jacobite heir to claim the throne of England and Scotland, who lived in exile in Rome. He was visited there by Pope Pius VII between 1802 and 1805. By 1830, the villa was being rented by Robert Henry Cheney (1801-1866), the friend and pupil of Cromek. The grounds of the villa has formal English gardens dotted with Mannerist sculpture while the villa itself contains frescoes by Lanfranco, Pietro da Cortona, Cigoli and Passignano and now belongs to the local `Comune di Grottoferrata.'