Purchased from Oronzio Lelli in 1890 for 17s 6d
Portrait of Francesco di Tommaso Sassetti (1421-90)
Unidentified Florentine sculptor
Museo Nazionale (Bargello), Florence, Italy
Francesco Sassetti was the director general of the Medici bank from 1459-90. The sitter has been identified through the resemblance of this bust to the portrait of Sassetti in the fresco by Domenico Ghirlandaio (1448/9-94) in the church of S. Trinità, Florence (1483-5). When the cast was purchased, the original was thought to be by Benedetto da Maiano (1442-97), and has since been ascribed to Antonio Rossellino (1427-79) but there is no firm basis for either attribution. This type of portrait, depicting the sitter in classicizing costume based on Roman portrait busts, became popular during the 15th century and was employed in 1464 by Mino da Fiesole for his bust of Dietisalvi Neroni in the Louvre.