Rooms 50a – 50d

Plan a visit

The Renaissance collections bring together masterpieces of northern and southern European art from the late 1400s to the early 1600s. Monumental sculptures, rich textiles and colourful ceramics show artists’ continued fascination with the art of the Roman world and the importance of the Christian church as patron.

Read more
See less
Highlights include the greatest collection of Italian Renaissance sculpture outside Italy, with pieces by Donatello, Andrea Briosco (‘il Riccio’) and Giambologna, as well as notebooks owned by Leonardo da Vinci. Richly-coloured stained glass from Northern Europe, rare carpets from Spain and a striking display of armour suggest the splendour and wealth of the period.

Collection Highlights

Volume II of the Foster Codex, by Leonardo da Vinci, late 15th – early 16th century, Milan, Italy
pair of gauntlets
Pair of gauntlets, made by Lucio Piccinino, about 1585, Milan, Italy
Portrait of a Lady known as Smeralda Bandinell, painting, painted by Sandro Botticelli, 1470 – 80, Florence, Italy
hunting crossbow
Hunting crossbow, about 1590, Germany
(Detail) The Dacre Dolphin, figure, 1507 – 25, Cumbria, England
parade shield
Parade shield, made by Jorg Sigman, 1552, Augsburg, Germany
pair of gloves
Pair of gloves, made by Sheldon Tapestry Workshops, 1590 – 1610, Warwickshire, England
full view
Lantern, 1570 – 1600, Venice, Italy
Pendant, late 16th century, Europe
mechanical globe clock
Mechanical globe clock, made by Georg Roll and Johannes Reinhold, 1584, Augsburg, Germany
October; The Labours of the Months, roundel, made by Luca della Robbia, 1450 – 56, Florence, Italy
figure group
Samson Slaying a Philistine, figure group, sculpted by Giovanni Bologna, 1560 – 62, Florence, Italy