Sacred and Profane Love
The painting was made by the great Venetian painter for the wedding of Nicolò Aurelio and Laura Bagarotto in 1514. This is an allegory of married love: the woman to the left represents married love, the one to the right is an idealization of beauty. Cupid in the middle should be interpreted as an intermediary between Earthly Venus and Celestial Venus. The title of the work is due to a moralistic reading of the late 1600s. The painting is purported to have joined the collection thanks to Scipione Borghese’s purchase of cardinal Sfondrato’s paintings (1608).