The painted panels that tell the story of Cupid and Psyche were fitted onto a special chest, made to celebrate a marriage, and were part of a bride’s dowry. The chest was filled with expensive linens and paraded through the streets from the bride’s family home to her new home, as part of the wedding celebration. The chest would then be used as a piece of furniture in the family home for storage and sometimes as a bench to sit on.

The artist Jacopo del Sellaio was born and worked in Florence during the Renaissance, at a time when the city was emerging as the cultural and artistic centre of Europe.

Jacopo del Sellaio (1442 – 1493) Cupid and Psyche, Panel 1 c.1473 Tempera and gold on a wooden panel. At the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, England. https://www.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/inspire2020/focus

Jacopo del Sellaio (1442 – 1493) Cupid and Psyche, Panel 2 c.1473 Tempera and gold on a wooden panel. In a private collection. https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Jacopo_del_Sellaio_009.jpg