Tribuna of the Uffizi (painting)

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The Tribuna of the Uffizi
Johan Zoffany - Tribuna of the Uffizi - Google Art Project.jpg
Artist Johann Zoffany
Year 1772–78
Medium Oil painting
Dimensions 123.5 cm × 155.0 cm (48.6 in × 61.0 in)
Location Royal Collection, Windsor Castle

The Tribuna of the Uffizi (1772–1778) by Johann Zoffany is a painting of the north-east section of the Tribuna room in the Uffizi in Florence, Italy. The painting is part of the United Kingdom's Royal Collection.


In the summer of 1772 Zoffany left London for Florence with a commission from Queen Charlotte to paint 'the Florence Gallery'. (Neither she nor her husband George III ever visited Italy in person.) Felton Hervey who had a large art collection and who knew the Royal family met Zoffany in Florence. He was included in a prominent position in the painting by December 1772.[1] Zoffany was still working on the painting late in 1777, he only finally returned to England in 1779.[2] By this time Hervey had died.[1]


Johann Zoffany was a German born painter who had become successful in London. One of his principal patrons was the Royal family. Queen Charlotte had sent Zoffany to Florence where he had agreed to paint the Tribuna of the Uffizi. The agreed price was high and he was paid £300.[2]

Artworks shown[edit]

Zoffany has varied the arrangement of the artworks and introduced others from elsewhere in the Medici collection. He gained special privileges, with the help of George, 3rd Earl Cowper (1738–80), and Sir Horace Mann, 1st Baronet (1706–86), such as having seven paintings, including Raphael's Madonna della Sedia, temporarily brought in from the Pitti Palace so that he could paint them in situ in the Tribuna. In thanks Zoffany included a portrait of Cowper looking at his recent acquisition,[3] Raphael's Niccolini-Cowper Madonna (Cowper hoped to sell it on to George III – it is now in the Washington National Gallery of Art), with Zoffany holding it (to the left of the Dancing Faun).

The unframed Samian Sibyl on the floor was acquired for the Medici collection in 1777 - it was a workshop copy of the pendant to Guercino's Libyan Sibyl, recently bought by George III, and may be intended as a compliment to him.

Venus with a Satyr and Cupids by Annibale Carracci Raphael, Madonna della Sedia (Madonna of the Chair), c.1514 Guido Reni, Charity, 1607 Raphael, St John the Baptist Reni, Madonna Madonna della seggiola Correggio, Madonna and Child Justus Sustermans, Galileo Raphael, Madonna of the Goldfinch Franciabigio - Madonna of the Well Guido Reni, Cleopatra, 1635–40 Holy Family, then attributed to Perugino Rubens, Justus Lipsius with his Pupils, c.1615 Portrait of Leo X with two Cardinals by Raphael Tribute Money? by Carravagio? Rubens, Justus Lipsius with his Pupils, c.1615 Raphael, Pope Leo X with Cardinals Giulio de’ Medici and Luigi de’ Rossi, 1518 Niccolini-Cowper Madonna by Raphael Large central painting Holbein, Sir Richard Southwell, 1536 Cristofano Allori, Miracle of St Julian Holy Family, attributed to Niccolò Soggi ummm Raphael, Niccolini-Cowper Madonna, 1508, then in Lord Cowper’s possession, having bought it from Zoffany, now National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC Titian, Venus of Urbino, 1538 Cupid and Psyche, Roman copy of a Greek original of the 1st or 2nd century BC The ‘Arrotino’ (Knife-Grinder), a Pergamene original of 2nd or 3rd century BC Dancing Faun, marble replica of a bronze of the circle of Praxiteles, 4th century BC The Infant Hercules Strangling the Serpents The Wrestlers, marble copy of a bronze Permamene original, 2nd or 3rd century BC South Indian crater Etruscan helmet Chimera - Etruscan art 8 Oil lamps Egyptian ptahmose, 18th dynasty Greek bronze torso Bust of Julius Caeser Roman silver shield Head of Antinous South Italian crater Etruscan jug Octagonal table with pietra dura top made for the Tribuna, designed by Jacopo Ligozzi and Bernardino Poccetti. Charles Loraine Smith (1751–1835) Richard Edgcumbe, later 2nd Earl of Mount Edgcumbe (1764–1839) George, 3rd Earl Cowper (1738–89) Sir John Dick (1720–1804), British Consul at Leghorn Other Windsor, 6th Earl of Plymouth (1751–99) Johann Zoffany Mr Stevenson, companion to the Lord Lewisham George Legge, Lord Lewisham, later 3rd Earl of Dartmouth (1755–1810) unknown young man Valentine Knightley of Fawsley (1744–96) Pietro Bastianelli, the custodian of the gallery Mr Gordon Hon. Felton Hervey (1712–73) Thomas Patch (1725-82), Painter Sir John Taylor Bt., (d. 1786) Sir Horace Mann (1706–86), British Consul in Florence George Finch, 9th Earl of Winchilsea prob. Roger Wilbraham (1743-1829) Mr Watts Mr Doughty, travelling with Charles Loraine Smith Probably Thomas Wilbraham (b. 1751), brother of Roger The Medici Venus, Roman copy of a Greek original of the 2nd century BC James Bruce (1730–94), African explorer Use a cursor to explore or press button for larger image & copyright
Tribuna of the Uffizi by Johann Zoffany. Place cursor over artworks or persons to identify them.



List of the paintings by wall, from top row, left to right

Left wall
Central wall
  • Titian's workshop, Madonna and Child with Saint Catherine (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Raphael and workshop, St John the Baptist (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Guido Reni, Madonna (private collection?)
  • Raphael, Madonna del cardellino (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Rubens, The Consequences of War (Palatine Gallery, Pitti Palace, Florence)
  • Franciabigio (formerly attributed to Raphael), Madonna del Pozzo (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Unrecognizable painting (between the legs of the Satyr)
  • Hans Holbein, Portrait of Sir Richard Southwell (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Raphael, Portrait of Perugino (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Perugino's workshop (Niccolò Soggi?), Madonna with Child, Saint Elizabeth and Saint John (Uffizi, Florence, still in the Tribuna)
Right wall
  • Guido Reni, Cleopatra (Palatine Gallery, Pitti Palace, Florence)
  • Rubens, Four Philosophers (Palatine Gallery, Pitti Palace, Florence)
  • Raphael, Pope Leo X with Cardinals Giulio de' Medici and Luigi de' Rossi (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Pietro da Cortona, Abraham and Hagarìì (Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna)
  • Bartolomeo Manfredi, Tribute to Caesar (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Cristofano Allori, Hospitality of Saint Julian (Palatine Gallery, Pitti Palace, Florence)
  • Unrecognizable painting (right of the Wrestlers)
  • Unrecognizable painting (Charity?)
  • Unrecognizable painting (behind the Venus)
  • Unrecognizable painting (you can only see a golden frame behind the man in red at the very right)
Lower part
  • Raphael, Niccolini-Cowper Madonna (National Gallery of Art, Washington). This painting was owned by Zoffany at the moment: this explains its prominence.
  • Guercino's workshop, Samian Sibyl (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Titian, Venus of Urbino (Uffizi, Florence)

Sculptures and other[edit]

Today Medici's Ancient Roman statues are mostly in the main corridors of the Uffizi Gallery, except those which are still in the Tribuna, and except the smaller busts and statuettes (some antique, some pseudo-antique), owned by the National Archaeological Museum and permanently displayed at Villa Corsini a Castello, near Florence. Many of those painted by Zoffany are still to be identified, thou. Other antiquities (Etruscan, Egyptian, Greek) are mostly in the National Archaeological Museum. Some very few Renaissance pieces from the Tribuna are now in the Bargello Museum.


From left:

  • Bust of a woman (?)
  • Bust of a Roman emperor (?)
  • Bust of Heracles (?)
  • Bust of a man (?)
  • Ancient Roman bust of a Julio-Claudian dynasty (Villa Corsini a Castello, Florence)
  • Bust of Demetra (?)
  • Bust of a woman (?)
  • Ancient Roman art, Artemis of Ephesus, 2nd century AD (Villa Corsini a Castello, Florence)
  • Bust of a man in alabaster (?)
  • Seated man statuette (?)
  • Bronze seated Heracles (?)
  • Bust of a boy (?)
  • Bust of a boy (?)
  • Bust of a man (?)
  • Bust of Zeus (?)
  • Bronze statuette (?)
  • Bust of a man (?)
  • Cupid (?)
  • Bronze statuette of Heracles (?)
  • Bust of a man (?)
  • Relief of a horse (?)
  • Bust of a man (?)
  • Bertoldo di Giovanni, Putto playing the lute (Bargello, Florence)
  • Pan (?)
  • Seated Goddess (?)
  • Bust of a boy (?)
  • Ancient Roman art, Heracles and the Nemean Lion (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Seated woam (?)
  • Bust of Bacchus (?)
  • Ancient Roman art, Cupid and Psyche (Uffizi, Florence)
  • Ancient Roman art, Dancing Faun (Uffizi, Florence, still in the Tribuna)
  • Jacopo Antelli (Monicca) and Jacopo Ligozzi, Octagonal table with Pietre Dure mosaics (Uffizi, Florence, still in the Tribuna)
  • Ancient Roman art, Baby Hercules strangling two serpents (Uffizi, Florence, still in the Tribuna)
  • Ancient Roman art, The Two Wrestlers (Uffizi, Florence, still in the Tribuna)
  • Cleomenes, Medici Venus (Uffizi, Florence, still in the Tribuna)
  • Baltimore Painter, Apulian krater with Amazonomachy (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Etruscan bronze elm with "button" on top, from Cannae (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Ancient Roman art, Arrotino (Uffizi, Florence, still in the Tribuna)
  • Etruscan (with 17th-century implements), Chimera of Arezzo (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Severo Calzetta da Ravenna, Lucerna in the shape of a Twisting Man (Bargello, Florence)
  • Late antique, Ardaburio's Plate (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Bust of a man (?)
  • Florentine pseudo-antique art, second half of the 16th century, Bronze head of Antinous (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Bronze lucerna (?)
  • Etruscan amphora in bucchero (National Archaeological Museum, Florence?)
  • Etruscan oinochoe in bucchero (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Etruscan situla in bucchero (National Archaeological Museum, Florence?)
  • Ancient Greek art, Livorno Torso (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Ancient Egyptian art, Cube statue of Ptahmose (National Archaeological Museum, Florence)
  • Etruscan funerary urn probably Volterra production (?) (under the Venus of Urbino)

Persons shown[edit]

All the connoisseurs, diplomats and visitors to Florence portrayed are identifiable, making the painting a combination of the British 18th-century conversation piece or informal group portrait genre, with that of the predominantly Flemish 17th-century tradition of gallery views and wunderkammers. However, this inclusion of so many recognisable portraits led to criticism at the time by Zoffany's royal patrons, and by Horace Walpole, who called it "a flock of travelling boys, and one does not know nor care whom."[4]

The man touching the Venus is probably the painter Thomas Patch.


  1. ^ a b The Hon Felton Harvey by John Faynam, National Trust, retrieved 4 June 2014
  2. ^ a b Tribuna of the Uffizi, Royal Collection, accessed 4 June 2014
  3. ^ A key to the people shown,, retrieved 17 October 2014
  4. ^ Letter to Mann, 12 November, 1779
  • Royal Collection
  • William L. Pressly, Genius Unveiled: The Self-Portraits of Johan Zoffany, The Art Bulletin, Vol. 69, No. 1. (Mar., 1987), pp. 88–101.
  • John Anthony Nicholls: Das Galeriebild im 18. Jahrhundert und Johann Zoffanys "Tribuna". Ph.D., Bonn University 2006 PDF
  • Desmond Shawe-Taylor, The Conversation Piece: Scenes of Fashionable Life (2009)