(b. ca. 1386, Firenze, d. 1466, Firenze)
Equestrian Statue of Gattamelata1447-50
Bronze, 340 x 390 cm (without base)
Piazza del Santo, Padua
The heroic idealisation that Donatello achieved in his composition of the monument has caused the work to become the forerunner of almost all later equestrian monuments. Donatello for his part created a link with the classical tradition of equestrian statues, without merely copying them. A posthumous honour, which is what this monument represented for the simple military leader Gattamelata, had previously always been exclusively reserved, in free-standing sculptures of this monumental size, for important noblemen and rulers.