Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object
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Backplate

Armorer:
Probably by Francesco Negroli (Italian, Milan, died before December 1519)
Date:
ca. 1505–10
Geography:
Milan
Culture:
Italian, Milan
Medium:
Steel
Dimensions:
19 3/8 x 15 1/4 x 6 3/4 in. (49.3 x 39 x 17.3 cm); Wt. 5 lb. 6 oz. (2461 g)
Classification:
Armor Parts-Backplates
Credit Line:
Purchase, Arthur Ochs Sulzberger Gift, 2014
Accession Number:
2014.154
Not on view
Judging by the maker's marks stamped on it, this backplate appears to be the only surviving identifiable work by Francesco Negroli, a member of a leading family of Milanese armorers, which, in the next generation, became internationally renowned for their sculpturally embossed armors all'antica (in the antique style). The backplate is in a style known as alla tedesca (in the Germanic fashion), suggesting that it was made for a client north of the Alps.
Marking: Punched at the top of the backplate, in the center just below the angular turned edge, are three armorer's marks: in the center, crossed keys with circular heads, their bits down, surmounted by an open crown (the mark used by members of the Negroli family from ca. 1500–30); to either side are single letters surmounted by an abbreviation sign, that on the left an F (apprently struck over an N), that on the right an N (possibly indicating Francesco Negroli).
Robert Alexander Hillingford, London (until about 1881; sold to Robinson); [Sir John Charles Robinson, London, about 1881–82; sold to Cincinnati Art Museum]; Cincinnati Art Museum, Cincinnati, Ohio (1882–1978; sale, William S. Doyle Galleries, New York, December 13, 1978, no. 91, for $110, to a private collector); private collection (1978–2014; sold to MMA).
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