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Announcements | 27/03/2024

The Glorification of the Virgin by Fra Angelico rejoins its predella

The panels have been reassembled for the first time after the Second World War

After many decades, a masterpiece by Fra Angelico has been reassembled at the Uffizi: the old altarpiece with the Glorification of the Virgin. The painting has in fact just been reunited with its predella (depicting the Marriage and Funeral of the Virgin), which has been preserved in Florence since the end of the Second World War, yet in the Museum of San Marco. Visitors can now admire the work as a whole at the Uffizi.

The altarpiece with the Coronation, Marriage and Funeral of the Virgin comes from the Church of Sant'Egidio in Florence. It entered the Uffizi around the early years of the twentieth century. The panel and its predella split after the Second World War: to protect it from the bombings and raids of the Nazi army, the altarpiece was sent away from Florence and concealed in various secret locations in the surroundings, including the Castle of Poppi and the Medici villa of Poggio a Caiano. Once the war was over, the work was divided into two parts: the panel, which returned to the Uffizi, and the predella, which was sent to the San Marco Museum where it has remained for decades until today's reunification.

At the same time, the panel with the Thebaid, another work generally attributed to Fra Angelico, was transferred from the Uffizi to the San Marco Museum, where a large part the painter's works are on display. Now located in the 'Fra Angelico's Room', the Thebaid arrived at the Uffizi in 1783 as a work attributed to Gherardo Starnina and was finally referred to Fra Angelico's early career by Roberto Longhi only in 1940, although its attribution was generally accepted on a larger scale only from the 1990s.

Also on loan from the Uffizi to the San Marco Museum are four monochrome panels by an unknown 17th-century painter depicting Dominican saints, previously preserved in the Department of Prints and Drawings of the Uffizi, albeit located in the apothecary of the San Marco convent still at the end of the 18th century.

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