Pasquale Romanelli was a pupil of Luigi Pampaloni and Lorenzo Bartolini in Florence. He subsequently became Bartolini's collaborator and continued his studio on the latter's death. Romanelli achieved notoriety in his own right, executing numerous public monuments in his native Italy and exhibited both in Paris and London. He was particularly renowned for his sensuous treatment of mythological, allegorical and biblical female figures. A figure of Ruth was exhibited by Romanelli at the Paris Salon in 1851. It is not clear, however, whether the present marble is an identical version to the earlier work, or a re-interpretation of the same theme. The time difference between the two works suggests that it is probably the latter.
Another example of the present model, on pedestal, was sold in these rooms, 29 October 2003, lot 131 ($59,750).