A preparatory study for the picture in the Cappella Aldobrandini in S. Maria in Via, Rome. Forming the altarpiece, the picture of the Annunciation (Fig. 1) is flanked by two frescoes of The Adoration of the Shepherds and The Adoration of the Magi, a decorative scheme executed between August 1594 and February 1596 (H. Röttgen, Il Cavalier Giuseppe D'Arpino, Rome, 2002, pp. 282-3). Another study for the same picture was sold in these Rooms on 8 July 2008, lot 10. Although that drawing included the detailed architectural setting, which appears with very few changes in the finished picture, the respective poses of the angel and the Virgin suggest that the present sheet dates from later in the compositional process. The angel's pose, with his arm stretched forward in benediction, is much closer in the present sheet to that in the finished painting. The Virgin, whose lower body faced away from the angel in the drawing sold in 2008, is represented here in the act of turning, in a more forceful and monumental pose than that finally adopted in the painting, where she kneels facing the angel without the elegant contrapposto seen in the two preparatory studies.