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European Decorative Arts

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Virgin and Child

about 1260
17 1/2 x 4 5/8 x 4 1/4 in. (44.45 x 11.75 x 10.8 cm)

Creation Place: Paris, France
Medium: Ivory; silver crown added in the 19th century
Credit Line: Bequest of Charles Phelps Taft and Anna Sinton Taft
Accession Number: 1931.319

Probably commissioned by an unknown patron, 13th century; probably gift to Abbey Church of Saint-Denis, Paris, 13th century; confiscated by revolutionaries, 1794; transferred to Notre Dame de Paris, Paris, by at least 1802 until 1811. Acquired by Edouard Delacour, 1889. Acquired by Gaston Lebreton; (sold by Galeries Georges Petit, Paris, December 6, 1921 (stock no. 196)). (Acquired by Duveen); purchased by Charles Phelps Taft [1843-1929] and Anna Sinton Taft [1850-1931], Cincinnati, OH, January 18, 1924; donated to the Cincinnati Institute of Fine Arts, Cincinnati, OH, May 21, 1927 [1]; transferred to the Taft Museum of Art, Cincinnati, OH, September 1, 2006 [2].


[1]. The Cincinnati Institute of Fine Arts (CIFA) was formed by Charles Phelps and Anna Sinton Taft on March 22, 1927 as a non-profit corporation to stimulate the development of art and music in the City of Cincinnati and run the Taft Museum of Art, which opened in 1932. The Tafts offered $1 million for a permanent endowment fund, on the condition that the community raise $2.5 million in matching funds, which was achieved by December 3, 1928. [2]. Until August 31, 2006, the Museum was owned by CIFA, administered by CIFA’s Board of Trustees, and governed by the Taft Museum Board of Overseers. On September 1, 2006, the Museum legally separated from CIFA and began operations as its own incorporated 501(c)(3) entity. This separate incorporation led to the transfer to the separate entity after August 31, 2006 of all tangible assets comprising the Taft collection.

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