Picture 4


We have probably had this picture about 30 years. It is a reproduction print but we cannot now recall who the little girl is, her name being hidden by the old picture frame we put the print in. Our recollection is that she might be Spanish (perhaps an Infanta?) but if anyone knows more do please let us know. Like a few other prints and photographs round the house the reds and yellows have faded over the years, so that she has now begun to withdraw gently into the blue misty distance. Nevertheless we are both very fond of her.

Update: Maria very kindly checked for Spanish sources (see her post below) for the picture and found none, suggesting that the portrait originated elsewhere. At the same time a friend of ours who lives nearby emailed to identify the little girl as Italian, probably Bia (or Bianca) de Medici. The painting is by Agnolo Bronzino. Her Wikipedia entry says she was the illegitimate daughter of Cosimo I de Medici, Grand Duke of Tuscany. The identity of Bia’s mother is not known, but Cosimo I was probably no older than sixteen when he fathered her. She was described at the time as a very affectionate, high-spirited, loving little girl. She died of a fever on 1st March 1542, after an illness lasting several days. She was aged about six.

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10 Responses to Picture 4

  1. acuriousgal says:

    She’s adorable…hope you find out her name! ~Barb

  2. ninamishkin says:

    Is that one of Mrs. T’s necklaces I see on the frame? 🙂

  3. I googled this: ” Infante is the title and rank given in the Iberian kingdoms of Spain (including the predecessor kingdoms of Aragon, Castile, Navarre and León), and Portugal, to the sons and daughters (infantas) of the king, sometimes with the exception of the heir apparent to the throne who usually bears a unique princely or ducal title. The wife of an infante was accorded the title of infanta if the marriage was dynastically approved”. I googled your portrait with no results, apparently because the were so many of them. It goes on to say: “Infante had no feminine form at first in Portugal and may be compared to the infanções of the lower Portuguese nobility, who were also cadets of their families with no prospect of inheriting the main possessions of the noble families to which they belonged, being distinguished in law by some prerogatives, but little patrimony.
    Later, the word infanta emerged in Portugal as a feminised form applied to Portuguese princesses after the 16th and 17th centuries.” There are Spanish, Portuguese, Leonese, Castilian, Aragonese Infantas. So I don’t know if yours is Spanish; but I googled it out of curiosity; and at least it doesn’t seem to be in Google (images).

    • Trifocal says:

      That is so kind of you Maria 🙂 In fact I have just now had an email from a neighbour who follows the blog. He has traced the picture and says she is not Spanish as we thought but Italian- probably Bianca di Medici. I am checking for more information and will add something to the post when I get it. I had no idea that the title of Infanta had such a complex history, nor that there was a male form as well.

  4. Such a lovely serene face in a child. It makes me sad to hear she died so young.

  5. I’m enjoying seeing what is on your walls. Ours are still fairly bare — the husband is a bit of a perfectionist and only wants to put up pictures once everything else is in place. I’ve managed to nag him into putting up three or four. But I’m working on it as I’m tired of empty white walls.

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