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Friday, 30 March, 2001, 17:46 GMT 18:46 UK
Da Vinci sketch could top 3.5m
The Last Supper
The Last Supper was painted 17 years after Horse and Rider
A sketch by famed artist Leonardo da Vinci could fetch in excess of 3.5m when it is goes up for auction in the summer.

Christie's auction house in London is selling Horse and Rider as part of a collection of Old Master Drawings.

Horse and Rider
Horse and Rider is a sketch of a work never completed
The silverpoint study by the renaissance master is considered to be the most significant drawing offered for sale since the 1930s.

It is one of the only ones left in private ownership and highlights his fascination with horses.

Horse and Rider is a preparatory study for the artist's unfinished panel, The Adoration of the Magi.

US home

The work was commissioned in March 1481 as an altarpiece for the monks of San Donato a Scopeto outside Florence.

It marked his first independent commission after his apprenticeship with Verrocchio.

Da Vinci was a painter, sculptor, architect, theorist and scientist who continued to influence long after his death in 1519.

Horse and Rider was bought by John Brown at auction in 1928 and has remained within the family in the US since.

It goes under the hammer at Christie's in London on 10 July.

See also:

09 Sep 99 | Europe
Da Vinci inspiration on show
27 Jun 00 | Sci/Tech
Da Vinci's parachute flies
22 Jul 99 | Sci/Tech
The earliest drawing of the Moon?
27 May 99 | Entertainment
The Last Supper shown
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