As the inscription 'No 3558. Xrs. 48.' on the verso shows, this drawing was part of one of the most important groups of drawings by Giovanni Battista and Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo ever assembled. It was owned by Giovanni Domenico Bossi (1765-1853), a painter of probably Venetian origin, who after having trained in the Akademie des Bildende Künste in Vienna, moved to Munich where he became a professor and court painter. Upon his death the drawings passed into the possession of his daughter Maria Theresa Karoline (1825-1881) wife of Karl Christian Friedrich Beyerlen (1826-1881). The collection - which included more than 800 drawings by the Tiepolos! - was sold after their deaths at auction in Stuttgart. The catalogue organized the drawings by technique (three quarters were in red chalk, the remaining in pen and ink) and subject. The Stuttgart Staatsgalerie purchased 168 red chalk drawings for 426 Marks.
G. Knox in the fullest account of this extraordinary collection has shown that the code at the back of the drawings consists of a serial number (here 3358; they are usually lying between 2000 and 3800) and a price expressed in 'f' for florins or in 'Xrs' for kreutzers (Drawings by Giambattista, Domenico and Lorenzo Tiepolo from the Graphische Sammlung, Staatsgalerie Stuttgart, from Private Collections in Wuerttemberg and from the Martin von Wagner Museum of the University of Wuerzburg, 1971, p. 7-9, the 1882 auction catalogue reproduced p.198). Kreutzers were the traditional Austrian currency, of which equaled 60 kreutzers to one florin. It is possible that the code expresses a legal valuation and inventory rather than a selling price. It is not known who made the inscriptions but Knox suggested they could be by Giovanni Domenico Tiepolo.
A similar Domenico drawing where doves appear to be seeking to wrest the bows from the blindfolded Cupid was in the Beauchamp sale, Christie's, London, 15 June 1965, lot 11.