GattemelataDonatello, Michele Gherardi (cast maker)
- 1447–1453 (original), 1906 (cast)
- plaster cast
- 660 × 376 × 177 cm with base: 1038 × 376 × 448 cm
- Current Location of the Original Artwork
- Italy, Padua, Piazza del Santo
Donatello, the famous Florentine sculptor, produced the equestrian statue of the Paduan condottiere Erasmo da Narni (1370—1443), known as “Gattamelata”, between 1447 and 1453. In his will the mercenary commander had expressed a wish for a commemorative tomb to be installed in the Basilica of Saint Anthony in Padua. After his death, the Venetian Senate decreed the erection — outside the basilica — of an equestrian memorial statue in honor of Erasmo’s military services. Almost four meters in height, the bronze statue, made using the lost-wax method, was the first monumental equestrian statue of the Renaissance. Its precedent was the ancient Roman equestrian statue of Marcus Aurelius on the Capitoline Hill in Rome, which Donatello had studied during a visit to the Eternal City around 1433. Commissioned by the museum in 1906, cast by M. Gherardi in Rome. It was erected in 1908, in the Roman Hall.