This composition is clearly inspired by Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione, the closest composition being an oil study sold by Loudmer, Poulain, Cornette de Saint-Cyr, Paris, 7 November 1973, lot 164. Castiglione was particularly fond of the subject which he treated throughout his career, perhaps because it gave him free rein to fill the composition with the congregation of animals that came so easily to his pen and brush. The present composition is closest to the earliest of these, of circa 1630, a painting now at the Palazzo Pitti, Florence, and an etching (A. Percy, Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione, exhib. cat., Philadelphia, Museum of Art, 1971, p. 21, fig. 1, and p. 136, no. E1).