Marriage box

Italian (Tuscany)
about 1400–25


Overall: 18 x 27.5 cm (7 1/16 x 10 13/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Beech with tempera and gilded decoration over a gesso ground

On View

Italian Renaissance Gallery E (Gallery 219)





Circular box formed of bent wood, entirely painted. Exterior oainted with hunting scenes and two coats-of-arms in center of cover. Interior painted red. Slightly chipped edges.

This box, decorated with two coats-of-arms on the cover, contained costly gifts presented to a bride by her groom to mark a betrothal or wedding. The lively hunt scene may playfully refer to the quest for love.


Attilio Simonetti (b. 1843 - d. 1925), Rome (?). Albert Figdor (b. 1843 - d. 1927), Vienna (?) [see note 1]. 1937, Giorgio Sangiorgi (b. 1886 - d. 1965), Rome; August 28, 1937, sold by Sangiorgi to Brummer Gallery, New York (stock no. P14043); 1955, sold by Brummer to the MFA for $2800. (Accession Date: February 13, 1947)

[1] According to the Brummer stock card, this box came "from the Simonetti and Figdor collections." Though a five-volume catalogue of Albert Figdor's collection was published at the time of its sale ("Sammlung Dr. Albert Figdor, Wien," Cassirer and Helbing, Berlin, September 29-30, 1930), this box was not included. It may have been sold at another time. It is also possible that it was confused with another, similar, box that formed part of the Figdor collection (see vol. 5, lots 341, 342).

Credit Line

William E. Nickerson Fund and Otis Norcross Fund