This is the earliest signed and dated painting by Breenbergh and so is a key work for our knowledge of his early years in Italy. He had arrived in Rome late in 1619 and was to remain there for ten years. This exquisiste small copper panel display the profound influence on the young Bereenbergh of Jacob Pynas, who had left Rome to return to Holland in 1608 but whose influence on young Dutch artists was still pervasive.
The antique building on the rocky hillside is the Tempel of the Sibyl at Tivoli, which was often drawn by Northern artists, including Breenbergh. The painting is signed B Breenborch (BB as monogramme) F.ao 1622.