Page last updated at 12:26 GMT, Wednesday, 12 November 2008

'Newly found' Caravaggios on show

Boy Peeling Fruit (The Royal Collection - HM Queen Elizabeth II)
Boy Peeling Fruit is thought to have been completed in 1592-93

Two newly discovered paintings by the Italian artist Caravaggio will go on display in Scotland for the first time.

The pictures were among several cleaned in a conservation studio for the exhibition at the Queen's Gallery at Edinburgh's Palace of Holyroodhouse.

During that process, specialists found that two paintings thought to be copies of lost originals had actually been painted by the 17th Century artist.

The works are The Calling of Saints Peter and Andrew and Boy Peeling Fruit.

The pieces are dated to 1592-93 and 1600-01 respectively.

In recent years many art handbooks and guides had listed them as likely copies of the paintings by the Italian, who has most of his work displayed in his home country.

The Calling Of Saints Peter And Andrew (The Royal Collection - HM Queen Elizabeth II)
King Charles I bought The Calling Of Saints Peter And Andrew in 1637

But the pieces were verified as Caravaggio originals during the cleaning process, when specialists were able to carry out detailed examinations of several paintings and assess their status with scholars in the field.

The Calling of Saints Peter and Andrew was bought by King Charles I from an art dealer in 1637 and depicts the two saints with a young, beardless Christ.

The exhibition - The Art of Italy in the Royal Collection: The Baroque - runs from 13 November to 8 March.

It will feature 31 paintings and 43 drawings from artists such as Bernini, Poussin and Domenichino.

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