Dante and Virgil

modeled 1861; cast 1862
Baron Henri de Triqueti (French, 1804–1874)

Object Place: Europe, France


90 x 86 x 64 cm (35 7/16 x 33 7/8 x 25 3/16 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


On View

Thomas Jefferson Coolidge III Gallery (Gallery 248)





Half length figures of Dante and Virgil. Modeled 1861, cast 1862.

Triqueti, like many artists of his time, was inspired by medieval and Renaissance art and literature. He often represented the Italian poet Dante (1265-1321) or illustrated episodes from Dante’s Divine Comedy. Here, using a half-length format that recalls antique funerary statuary, he portrayed Dante with Roman poet Virgil, who guided him through Hell and Purgatory in the Divine Comedy. Dante holds a scroll inscribed with a line from Canto One of Purgatory: “Liberta va cercando ch’e si cara” (He who goes seeking freedom which is so dear).


Signed and dated, back right: H. de triqueti 1861; foundry mark and date, back left: F. BARBEDIENNE, fondeur paris 1862; Inscribed on scroll (from Dante's "Purgatory," canto I): Liberta/va cercando/ch’e/si cara ("He who goes seeking freedom which is so dear")


1874, upon the death of the artist, to his daughter, Mrs. Edward Lee Childe (Blanche de Triqueti, b. 1837 - d. 1886), Paris; 1876, gift of Mrs. Edward Lee Childe to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 7, 1876)

Credit Line

Gift of Mrs. Edward Lee Childe