26 MARCH 1859, Page 19


Some interesting and valuable examples in various sections of art have been, within the last few days, added to the Art Museum at South Kensington, having been acquired at Rome and elsewhere in a recent visit to Italy by Mr. Cole. Among the specimens is a mosaic of about 1630, representing a colossal head Of St. Peter, a very good example of that method of mosaic work from the Papal manufactory which was then used, and had been for centuries, in the execution of many great works of decoration—as, for example, the tribune of S. Maria Maggiore and the cupola of St. Peter's; the insterstices between the pieces composing the mosaic are not filled in, but each is held in its place simply by the layer of cement on which they rest. Murray's "Handbook" directed visitors to look out for three curiously-engraved bamboo canes at the Collegio Romano. These have been now obtained by Mr. Cole, and brought to. England : they are remarkable specimens of elaborate workmanship, the whole surface being covered with engraved ornament and medallions containing representations of scriptural subjects. The earliest, which, dates from the latter half of the fifteenth century, has 59 subjects, each described by a brief Latin legend. Another of Italian, sixteenth century work, has 76 medallions, and has the spaces between completely filled up with scroll-work and grotesques ; rings, probably of precious metal, have originally decorated each joint, but these have been re- moved. A fine specimen of the Majolica ware of Forli manufacture, has also been acquired for the Museum ; this is from the collection of Mon- signor Cajana at Rome.