- Inventory number
- Velázquez, Diego Rodríguez de Silva y (Circle of)
- Portrait of a Buffoon with a Dog
- Ca. 1645
- 142 cm x 107 cm
- On display
- Royal Collection (New Royal Palace, Madrid, retrete del rey, 1772, n. 501; Royal Palace, Madrid, “dormitorio de príncipes-pieza primera”, 1814-1818, n. 501)
Outfitted with rich clothing and a sword that give him a certain air of nobility, the subject is shown holding a mastiff with his left hand and a hat in his right.
Several identities have been proposed for this sitter. For a long time he was though to be Antonio “el Inglés”, a palace buffoon who died in 1617 and whose name was assigned to this painting. Nowadays this identity has been discarded, as the style of his clothing dates from the sixteen-sixties.
While it was long attributed to Velázquez, this work's pictorial technique is more summary and careless than was customary for this painter from Seville. In any case, it is a magnificent example of Velázquez's impact on Spanish court portraiture during that period. It has also been attributed to Juan Carreño de Miranda, depending on whom it is thought to portray, when it might have been painted, and its technique.
This work is mentioned as being in the Royal Palace in the eighteenth century.