Vultus trifrons or an Allegory of Prudence

Pacio Bertini da Firenze
and Giovanni Bertini da Firenze
or another follower of Tino da Camaino

Not on view

The three faces on this small bust, a fragment from a larger monument, represent the cardinal virtue Prudence. Prudence's three natures (memory, intelligence, and providence) are represented by a crowned face shown at different stages of life. This personification thus conflates Prudence with the concept of the Ages of Man. The merging of the notions of virtue and the human life cycle coincided with a more nuanced understanding of human nature as well as a focus on the individual.

Vultus trifrons or an Allegory of Prudence, Pacio Bertini da Firenze (Florentine, active 1325–ca. 1351), Carrara marble

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