Born into a wealthy and prominent family (among his forebears was Pope Innocent VIII) and gifted in many fields of study, Cibo is best remembered as a botanist and landscape draughtsman. The great majority of his works are landscapes, many done from life, in pen on blue paper, heightened with white (for an overview of his œuvre, see Mangani and Tongiorgi Tomasi, op. cit.). The colourfulness of the present sheet comes closer to the botanical illustrations Cibo produced, and in its ambition, finish and abundant use of watercolour, it can be compared with only a handful of his surviving landscape drawings, including one at the Biblioteca Civica Benedetto Passionei at Fossombrone and another at the State Hermitage Museum (ibid., nos. 84, 240, figs. 66, 108). Of almost startling freshness, the present sheet also once was at the Hermitage until deaccessioned by the Soviet regime in 1931; it had been acquired by Catherine the Great in 1768, together with the major collection of drawings assembled by the Habsburg statesman Karl von Cobenzl (see Provenance).