Anthony van Dyck - The Rape of Europa, about 1628-1640

Traditionally attributed to Anthony van Dyck (Antwerp, 1599 - 1641, London)

The Rape of Europa, about 1628-1640

Pencil, red chalk, and watercolor on paper, 33.7 x 40 cm (13 1/4 x 15 3/4 in.)


Object details

Accession number



  • Anthony Van Dyck (Antwerp, 1599 - 1641, London) - primary
  • Peter Paul Rubens (Siegen, Germany, 1577 - 1640, Antwerp, Belgium) - artist
  • Titian (Pieve di Cadore, about 1488 - 1576, Venice) - artist


Purchased by Sir John Charles Robinson (1824–1913), museum curator, collector, and connoisseur, London in Antwerp on 31 July 1857.
Entered the collection of the Austrian court offical, poet, and art collector Hofrathes Philipp Dräxler von Carin (1794-1874), Vienna before 1874.
Acquired by the Austrian silversmith and purveyor Josef Carl von Klinkosch (1822-1888), Vienna from Hofrathes Philipp Dräxler von Carin in 1874 (?).
Purchased by an unknown collector at the auction of Josef Carl von Klinkosch's collection by C.J. Wawra, Vienna for 65 guldens (?) on about 15 April 1889, lot 798. (as Rubens)
Collection of an anonymous Viennese collector by 1894 (probably the above purchaser).
Offered at the auction of the collection of an anonymous Viennese collector by C.J. Wawra, Vienna on 4 May 1894, lot 255. (as Rubens)
Purchased by Otto Gutekunst (1865-1947) of the art dealers Colnaghi and Co., London for £21 before 18 December 1896. (attributed to Van Dyck after Titian)
Sent from Otto Gutekunst to the American art historian Bernard Berenson (1865-1956) on 18 December 1896.
Gift from Bernard Berenson to Isabella Stewart Gardner, probably 1897. (as Van Dyck)
Entered Isabella Stewart Gardner's collection by 1907.


Inscribed (lower left, verso, in pencil): Bought in Antwerp / July 31st 1857 / J.C. Robinson.
Inscribed (below the above inscription, verso, in pencil): Rubens -- from the picture by Titian / now in the Collection of Lord Darnley / sketch for which belongs to Marquis of Hertford
Inscribed (middle to lower right, verso, in pencil): [traces of other writing but mostly erased, illegible]
Inscribed (on a paper label matted with the framed work): This drawing in chalks is a copy by Anthony Van Dyke [sic] after Titian's "Europa" now in the collection of Mrs. J. L. Gardner at Fenway Court. / Bernhard Berenson


C.J. Wawra. Katalog der reichhaltigen und vorzüglichen Sammlung von alten handzeichnungen...aus dem Nachlasse des Herrn Josef C. Ritter von Klinkosch... (Veinna, 14 April 1889), p. 75, lot 798. (as after Titian; by Rubens; a preparatory sketch for his copy of The Rape of Europa, now housed in the Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, inv. no. P01693)
C.J. Wawra. Katalog einer reichhaltigen und gewählten Sammlung von alten und neueren Handzeichnungen, Aquarellen... (Vienna, 4 May 1894), p. 17, no. 255. (as after Titian; by Rubens; a prepatory sketch for his copy of The Rape of Europa)
"Fenway Court Reopened." Boston Evening Transcript (Boston, 28 Jan. 1907). (as after Titian, by Van Dyck)
Catalogue. Fenway Court. (Boston, 1912), p. 22. (as after Titian, by Van Dyck)
Philip Hendy. Catalogue of the Exhibited Paintings and Drawings (Boston, 1931), pp. 139-40, 372, 375, no. 5, ill. (as after Rubens after Titian, by Van Dyck, 1630-1632)
Gilbert Wendel Longstreet and Morris Carter. General Catalogue (Boston, 1935), p. 221. (as after Rubens after Titian, by Van Dyck, about 1630-1632)
Stuart Preston. "Van Dyck, 1599-1641" in Alfred M. Frankfurter (ed.). The Gardner Collection (New York, 1946), p. 30, ill. (as after Titian after Rubens, by Van Dyck, about 1631-1632)
Horst Vey. Die Zeichnungen Anton van Dycks (Monographien des Nationaal Centrum voor de Platische Kunsten van de XVIde en XVIIde Eeuw, part 1), vol. 1 (Brussels, 1962), p. 7. (as not by Van Dyck)
Gail Black. “Notes, Records, Comments.” Gardner Museum Calendar of Events 6, no. 1 (2 Sept. 1962), p. 2. (as after Rubens as after Titian, attributed to Van Dyck)
Philip Hendy. European and American Paintings in the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum (Boston, 1974), pp. 85-86, ill. (as after Rubens after Titian, by Van Dyck, 1628-1632)
Harold Wethey. The Paintings of Titian, vol. 3: The Mythological and Historical Paintings (London, 1975), p. 174, under cat. 30, no. 1. (as after Rubens after Titian, attributed to Van Dyck)
Matías Díaz Padrón. Escuela flamenca, siglo XVII, vol. 1 (Madrid, 1975), p. 286. (as by Van Dyck)
Rollin van N. Hadley. "Report of the Director." Fenway Court (1975), p. 41. (as by Van Dyck)
Rollin van N. Hadley. "A Provenance for the Van Dyck Drawing." Fenway Court (1987), pp. 46-47, ill. (as likely after Rubens after Titian, by Van Dyck)
Jeffrey Muller, Rubens: The Artist as Collector (Princeton, 1989), p. 66, fig. 30. (as after Rubens after Titian; attributed to Van Dyck, but probably by a younger student of Rubens)
Hilliard Goldfarb et al. Passionate Acts in Greek Art and Myth. Exh. cat. (Boston: Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, 1994), pp. 5, 7, 38-39, ill. (as likely after Rubens after Titian, by Van Dyck, before 1632)
Matías Díaz Padrón. El siglo de Rubens en el Museo del Prado, vol. 2 (Madrid, 1995), p. 996, ill. (as by Van Dyck)
Jeremy Wood. Corpus Rubenianum Ludwig Burchard, part 26. Rubens: Copies and Adaptations from Renaissance and Later Masters. Italian Artists, vol. 2: Titian and North Italian Art (London, 2010), pp. 178-79, 184, fig. 67. (as said to be Van Dyck, attributed to Jan Boeckhorst; Ludwig Burchard attributed it to Jean-Honoré Fragonard)

Rights and reproductions

The use of images, text, and all other media found on this website is limited. Please review Rights and Reproductions for details.


Shortly after Gardner purchased Titian's masterpiece, The Rape of Europa, her art advisor Berenson sent her a gift. The drawing——either a copy after her painting or after the copy by Rubens today in the Museo Nacional del Prado——commemorates the landmark acquisition. Occupying a table in Gardner’s Titian Room, it demonstrates the impact of this composition on subsequent generations of artists.


Anthony van Dyck

Woman with a Rose