The Deposition of Christ

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The Deposition of Christ
Although no painting of this subject by Romanino survives, this sheet is undoubtedly by him. The sturdy plebeian figure types and the expressive way they have been drawn without any refinement, strongly indicate that they are by him. Romanino has used a greenish-yellow wash on the sheet which is unusual in a sixteenth century drawing. Here, using only a few brushstrokes, the artist has effectively captured the strain expressed on the faces of the men as they remove Christ’s heavy dead body from the cross. The cloaked figure at the bottom of the ladder on the far left is the Virgin Mary, who wrings her hands and gasps as her son’s body is brought down towards her.

Glossary Open


A transparent layer of diluted ink or watercolour.



  • Acc. No. RSA 897
  • Medium Brush and wash, heightened with white, over black chalk on paper
  • Size 26.60 x 17.90 cm
  • Credit David Laing Bequest to the Royal Scottish Academy on loan 1974