This view in the countryside south of Rome would have been instantly recognizable to Vernet’s contemporaries. Its natural beauty and associations with the Roman past made it a site of pilgrimage for tourists and artists. Vernet would have painted this in his studio, working from sketches made on site. The painter’s real interest lies not in the topographically accurate landscape, but in the impermanent: the light of the setting sun and the changing sky, to which over half the painting is devoted. This work was commissioned by an English collector visiting Italy.