The ancient Egyptian queen Cleopatra, identifiable by the asp at her breast, who was known for her beauty and intellect is here depicted lounging on a divan.

When it was bequeathed to the Gallery this painting was described as coming from the School of Fontainebleau. This appears to be the case, although the artist may be Flemish, rather than French. It is possible that the work is from a series.

Key facts

Artist dates
active 1532; died 1561/2
Full title
Date made
possibly 1540s
Medium and support
Oil on poplar
46 × 45.7 cm
Acquisition credit
Bequeathed by Maurice Woolff Jacobson, 1943; entered the collection, 1947
Inventory number
Location in Gallery