FOPPA, Cristoforo, known as Il CARADOSSO (c.1452-1526/27). Autograph letter signed to Ludovico Maria Sforza, il Moro, duke of Milan, Rome, 15 February 1495, listing the antique sculptures he has been offered as possible purchases or gifts for the duke, one page folio, 287 x 216mm, address on verso, traces of red seal.
Caradosso reports on his negotiations with the Cardinal of Parma, Giovanni Giacomo Schiaffinati, bishop of Parma, who may have more than the one figure already offered if the duke writes to thank him, with Cardinal Giovanni Borgia, archbishop of Monreale, who has a marble Leda, with Cardinal Federico Sanseverino, Colonna (probably Cardinal Giovanni Colonna) and Siena (probably Cardinal Francesco Piccolomini Todeschini, archbishop of Siena), who have each promised 'qualche belle cossa'. He hopes to send the statues by sea to Genoa and then overland to Milan.
Caradosso, goldsmith to Ludovico il Moro, produced works which were greatly admired at all the Italian courts. His medals and carved gemstones closely imitated antiques and his knowledge of antique art led to his acting as an agent for Ludovico who, among other missions 1492-1497, sent him to Florence after the fall of the Medici. Their collections were achieving such high prices that Caradosso had greater success in Rome exerting diplomatic pressure on those anxious for the duke's friendship. The acquisition of antiques was a highly competitive business. The letter was published by E. Müntz, 'Le musée du Capitole et les autres collections romaines', Revue archéologique, 1882, p.32.