Bonasone, Julius

, called sometimes Bolognese, from the place of his birth, flourished in the sixteenth century, and is better known as an engraver than as a painter. He is supposed, but without sufficient authority, to have been a scholar of Sabbatini. Some remaining oil-pictures of his, on canvas, which are, in general, weak, and of different styles, make it probable, says Lanzi, that he resolved to be a painter when he had passed youth. There is, however, in the church of St. Stephano, in Bologna, a Purgatory of his, which has great beauties, and is suspected to have been done with the assistance of Sabbatini. As an engraver, he worked from the pictures of Raphael, Julio Romano, and other great masters; and occasionally from his own designs. Mr. Strutt’s opinion is, that excepting one or two subjects, in which he called in the assistance of the point (the use of which, however, he never well understood), his plates are executed chiefly with the graver, in a manner though much varied from that of his tutor, Marc Antonio Raimondi, yet evidently founded upon it, although neither so firm, clear, or masterly. His drawing is often heavy, and the extremities of his figures frequently neglected; the folds of his draperies are seldom well expressed, and the back grounds to his prints, especially his landscapes, are extremely flat and stiff. However, with all these faults (which are not always equally conspicuous), his best prints possess an uncommon share of merit; and though not equal to those of his master, are deservedly held in no small degree of estimation by the greatest collectors. Bonasone has lately found an ingenious and able advocate in George Cumberland, esq. who, in 1793, published “Some Anecdotes” of his life, with a catalogue of his engravings, &c. 2


Pilkington. —Strutt. Cumberland, as above.