Salvator Rosa figures today as a precursive figure in the history of Romanticism, and as an inspiration to landscape painters of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. In addition to his activities as a painter, etcher and draftsman, Rosa was a poet, actor and musician. Rosa entered the novitiate in 1630, but left soon after to pursue artistic training. He studied with his brother-in-law, Neapolitan artist Francesco Fracanzano, and later absorbed aspects of the Roman and Florentine schools of painting. Rosa’s artistic subjects consisted mainly of battle scenes, marines, figures and landscapes. Sometime in the 1640s Rosa developed an interest in Stoicism and began to incorporate philosophical subjects into his work. Stoics believed in the renunciation of worldly goods and ambitions in favour of the pursuit of virtue. In this large scale drawing, Rosa depicts a philosopher, likely Diogenes, in a contemplative pose in a wooded landscape.