Oil on canvas, 26.5cm by 39.5cm.
The painting appears in the 1688 Burghley Inventory: ‘My Ladyes Closett….6 pictures in Ebbony fframes (viz) The adoration, a St Sebastian, a young Christ’s head, St Johns head in a Charger, the flight into Egypt, ye Nativity in litle___} by Carlo Dulci.’
It also appears in that of 1738: ‘John the Baptist’s Head in a Charger; two Cherubims looking at it, Lilies lying by it, done by Carlo Dulci.’
Carlo Dolci was mainly active in his native Florence and was famous in his own lifetime for his intense religiosity and meticulous technique.
He was much patronised by John, 5th Earl of Exeter (1648-1700), who bought several of his paintings during his four Grand Tours.