NG2057 The National Gallery (London) The Toilet of Venus ('The Rokeby Venus') The Toilet of Venus ('The Rokeby Venus') 177.000 cm 177.000 # xsd:decimal 122.500 cm 122.500 # xsd:decimal NG2057 Thumbnail oil paintings (visual works) oil paint (paint) NG2057 Medium canvas (textile material) NG2057 Support NG2057 Display Date oil painting (technique) 1647-1651 NG2057 Production The Toilet of Venus ('The Rokeby Venus') This is the only surviving example of a female nude by Velázquez. The subject was rare in Spain because it met with the disapproval of the Church.Venus, the goddess of Love, was the most beautiful of the goddesses, and was regarded as a personification of female beauty. She is shown here with her son Cupid, who holds up a mirror for her to look both at herself and at the viewer.'The Rokeby Venus' is first recorded in June 1651 in the collection of the Marqués del Carpio, son of the First Minister of Spain. It was probably made for the Marqués and was presumably displayed privately, thus avoiding the censure of the Spanish Inquisition. In the Carpio collection, Velázquez's painting was paired with a 16th-century Venetian picture of a naked nymph in a landscape seen from the front. The painting is known as 'The Rokeby Venus' because it was in the Morritt Collection at Rokeby Park, now in County Durham, before its acquisition by the Gallery.