Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Enthroned Virgin and Child

mid-14th century
Made in probably Umbria, Tuscany, Central Italy
Wooden core, painted canvas and gesso
Virgin and Child only: 64 1/4 × 35 × 14 3/4 in., 54 lb. (163.2 × 88.9 × 37.5 cm, 24.5 kg)
Credit Line:
Rogers Fund, 1916
Accession Number:
16.154.10a, b
Not on view
The sculpture is created by pressing linen reinforced with glue into shallow molds and mounting the figure on a wood backing and adding paint and gilding. This work seems to be a unique surviving example of this technique. The Virgin is seated upon a throne displaying lion heads, a reference to the Throne of Solomon.
Significantly, a number of votive offerings are incorporated into the interior of the figure: a pearl rosary and bobbin lace and other fabrics. The figure is said to have come from the convent of Santa Chiara in Vaglia, Tuscany, indicating that it was probably made for a Clarissan convent, a sister order following the Franciscan rule.
Elia Volpi, Davanzati Palace, Florence (by 1910–sold 1916); his sale, American Art Association(November 21-28, 1916, lot 714)]
Rusconi, Arturo Jahn. "Le Palais Davanzati." Les Arts 116 (August 1911). p. 9.

Art treasures and antiquities formerly contained in the famous Davanzati Palace, Florence, Italy, which together with the contents of his Villa Pía were brought to America by their owner Professor Commendatore Elia Volpi. New York: American Art Association, November 21–28, 1916. no. 714, ill.

Milliken, William M. "New Acquisitions of Italian Art." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, o.s., 12, no. 2 (February 1917). p. 36.

Ferrazza, Roberta. Palazzo Davanzati e le collezioni di Elia Volpi. Florence: Centro Di, 1994. p. 272, fig. 34, 138, 160.

Castelnuovo-Tedesco, Lisbeth, and Jack Soultanian. Italian Medieval Sculpture in The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Cloisters. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2010. no. 41, pp. 186–198.

Kargère, Lucretia Goddard, and Michele D. Marincola. "Conservation in Context: The Examination and Treatment of Medieval Polychrome Wood Sculpture in the United States." Metropolitan Museum Studies in Art, Science, and Technology 2 (2014). p. 16.

Related Objects

Saint Margaret

Artist: Workshop of Michael Pacher (Austrian or German, active by 1462/3–died 1498) Date: ca. 1470–80 Medium: Pine with metal appliqués, traces of gesso and paint Accession: 63.13.2 On view in:Not on view


Artist: possibly commissioned by the Colonna family, Rome Date: ca. 1571–90 Medium: Bronze Accession: 2000.69 On view in:Gallery 534

Saint Bridget of Sweden Receiving the Rule of Her Order

Artist: Agostino d'Antonio di Duccio (Italian, 1418–after 1481) Date: 1459 Medium: Marble Accession: 14.45 On view in:Gallery 500


Artist: Giovanni Caccini (Italian, 1556–1613) Date: 1583–84 Medium: Marble Accession: 67.208 On view in:Gallery 534


Artist: Andrea Briosco, called Riccio (Italian, Trent 1470–1532 Padua) Date: ca. 1510–20 Medium: Bronze Accession: 1982.45 On view in:Gallery 536