The Flight into Egypt

Artist: Cosmè Tura (Cosimo di Domenico di Bonaventura) (Italian, Ferrara ca. 1433–1495 Ferrara)

Date: 1470s

Medium: Tempera on wood

Dimensions: Overall, with corners made up, 15 5/8 x 15 1/8 in. (39.7 x 38.4 cm); painted surface, diameter 15 1/4 in. (38.7 cm)

Classification: Paintings

Credit Line: The Jules Bache Collection, 1949

Accession Number: 49.7.17


An artist of incomparable fantasy and expressive power, Tura was court painter to the dukes of Ferrara. This roundel dates from the 1470s and belongs to a series of three scenes showing the early life of Christ. The series may come from the base (predella) of an altarpiece and has been associated with his masterpiece, the Roverella Altarpiece, the central panel of which is in the National Gallery, London. The nervous, calligraphic line and mystical-seeming landscape are typical of the artist.