We are grateful to Everett Fahy for identifying the present panel, on the basis of a transparency, as the work of lo Scheggia, the younger brother of Masaccio.
(Jean-)Alexis-François Artaud de Montor (1772-1849) was a pioneer in the revival of interest in the Italian 'primitives' in the nineteenth century. Trained as a diplomat, he went to Rome in 1799 as the secretary to François Cacault (1742-1805), who headed the French Legation to the Holy See. Cacault was an obsessive collector, whose twelve hundred pictures, assembled over a period of thirty years, are now in the Musée des Beaux-Arts, Nantes. Both men became acquainted with Seroux d'Agincourt (1730-1814), who had moved to Italy in 1779 to write a multi-volumed history of Italian art from the fall of the Roman Empire to the sixteenth century; it was through this vast book, which eventually began to appear in 1811, that the Italian 'primitives' became known to the rest of Europe. Artaud de Montor began collecting in earnest after his appointment as first secretary of the French Legation to Florence in 1805, buying twenty-five paintings from the collection of the great artist-collector-dealer Ignazio Enrico Hugford (1703-1778). By the time of his death he had gathered 150 panels. After Artaud de Montor's return to Paris he made his collection accessible to artists, to enthusiastic response, and made it known to a wider audience through his publications cited above. Many of his pictures are now in great European and American public collections. Thirteen were purchased at his posthumous sale by Thomas Jefferson Bryan and entered the collection of the New York Historical Society, from which the desco da parto of Lorenzo il Magnifico, the Giovanni da Milano Crucifixion, the Master of San Martino alla Palma panels, the Nardo di Cione altarpiece and the Bartolomeo di Fruosino desco da parto were sold at Sotheby's, New York, 12 January 1995.