Hafner ware stove tile

about 1525

Object Place: Europe, Austria


Overall: 24.1 x 13.8 x 3.8 cm (9 1/2 x 5 7/16 x 1 1/2 in.)

Accession Number


Medium or Technique

Lead-glazed earthenware

Not On View





Hafner ware stove tile. Landsknecht in orange, brown, and blue, wearing puffed and slashed costume, holding a halberd. Half a corner tile with partial corner column impressed with stylized plant ornament.


1938, Oscar Bondy (b. 1870 - d. 1944) and Elisabeth Bondy, Vienna; 1938, confiscated from Oscar and Elisabeth Bondy by Nazi forces (no. OB 863) [see note 1]; stored at the Central Depot, Neue Burg, Vienna, and probably removed to Alt Aussee [see note 2]; 1945, recovered by Allied forces and subsequently returned to Elisabeth Bondy, New York; by 1960, probably sold by Mrs. Bondy to Blumka Gallery, New York [see note 3]; January 4, 1961, sold by Blumka Gallery to R. Thornton Wilson (b. 1886 - d. 1977), New York [see note 4]; 1961, gift of R. Thornton Wilson to the MFA. (Accession Date: January 11, 1961)

[1] With the Anschluss, or annexation of Austria to Nazi Germany in March, 1938, the possessions of Oscar and Elisabeth Bondy were seized and expropriated almost immediately by Nazi forces. This tile is listed in a Nazi-generated inventory of the collection (July 4, 1938; Vienna, BDA-Archiv, Restitutions-Materialen, K 8/1), as no. 863 ("Bunte Eckkachel, Fragment mit Darstellung eines Landesknechtes, deutsch A.16.Jh. 24 x 14"). Also see Sophie Lillie, "Was einmal war: Handbuch der enteigneten Kunstsammlungen Wiens" (Vienna, 2003), p. 226, where it is listed in a later inventory of Bondy's possessions as well (April 3, 1939; Vienna, BDA-Archiv, Restitutions-Materialen, K 8/3).

[2] Many works of art stored elsewhere by the Nazis were moved to the abandoned salt mines of Alt Aussee in Austria, to be kept stafe from wartime bombing.

[3] Mr. Bondy and his wife left Europe and emigrated to the United States, where he passed away in 1944. In the years following World War II, much of his collection was restituted to his widow and subsequently sold on the New York art market, particularly through Blumka Gallery. In a letter from Richard H. Randall of the MFA to R. Thornton Wilson (April 28, 1960; in MFA curatorial file), the author mentions seeing the tile at Blumka Gallery, in anticipation of purchasing it. For further on Oscar Bondy, see Sophie Lillie 2003 (as above, n. 1), pp. 216-245.

Credit Line

Gift of R. Thornton Wilson in memory of Florence Ellsworth Wilson