Wood carving in the round of a nano/”little person” running, holding a scroll in his right hand, decorated with the original polychrome paint. North Italy, early 17th century.
Originally part of a larger group.
Individuals of restricted height have been represented in art forms practiced throughout the Italian Peninsula since antiquity. They have served as favourites, jesters and entertainers in the courts of sovereigns and were considered to bring luck. Their presence at European Renaissance courts was very common, as illustrated by their presence alongside their master or mistress in several artworks of that period.