By Anne Leader

On 23 October 1461, Florentine painter Benozzo Gozzoli was contracted to paint an altarpiece for the new oratory of the Compagnia di Santa Maria della Purificazione e di San Zanobi, a youth confraternity sponsored by Cosimo de’Medici at San Marco in Florence. The youths had originally met at a nearby church, but Cosimo built them a new oratory in 1441 at the refurbished Dominican convent of San Marco. The altarpiece shows Mary enthroned, surrounded by angels and various saints important to the confraternity and the Dominican friars who hosted them. The main panel is now in London, and the predella panels are dispersed among collections in London, Milan, Berlin, Washington, and Philadelphia.

Further reading: Benozzo Gozzoli by Diane Cole Ahl (1996).

Virgin and Child with Saints, 1461-2, London: National Gallery

Feast of Herod and Beheading of St. John the Baptist, 1461-2, Washington: National Gallery of Art

Purification of the Virgin, 1461-2. Philadelphia Museum of Art

St. Dominic Resuscitates Napoleone Orsini, 1461-2, Milan: Brera Gallery

Fall of Simon Magus, 1461-2. Hampton Court: Royal Collection

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