We are grateful to Maria Silva Proni for confirming the attribution from transparencies. She considers the present pictures 'di ottimo livello qualitativo' and intends to include them in her next publication on Cipper.
The dog in the first painting recurs in almost identical form in other works by Cipper (see M.S. Proni, Giacomo Francesco Cipper detto 'Il Todeschini', Soncino, 1994, pp. 84-5 and 110-11, nos. 23 and 35, both illustrated in colour, and p. 124, fig. 39). The latter picture also includes a hurdy-gurdy player. The hurdy-gurdy, an instrument of widespread use from the Middle Ages onwards in Northern Europe but comparatively little known in Italy, where it was known amongst other things as the lyra tedesca, was depicted by Cipper on a number of occasions (see ibid., pp. 44-5, no. 4, illustrated in colour, and pp. 58-9, no. 10, illustrated in colour, and fig. 15).
For a painting showing peasants playing the same combination of musical instruments, see the catalogue of the exhibition, Settecento lombardo, Palazzo Reale, Milan, 1 February-28 April 1991, p. 102, no. 1.52, illustrated in colour p. 100. For other paintings of these peasants with a mousetrap and a cat, see Proni, op. cit., p. 70, fig. 20 (where the youth also holds a recorder) and the catalogue of the exhibition Giuseppe Maria Crespi and the Emergence of the Genre Painting in Italy, Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, 20 September-7 December 1986, p. 70, fig. 62.