The Maestà is a large altarpiece that Duccio made between 1308 and 1311 for the Siena cathedral, the Duomo. The front shows Mary sitting on a throne - hence the name Maestà, which is Italian for majesty. She has her newborn son in her lap and is surrounded by numerous saints.
The reverse side showed several scenes from the life of Christ.
In 1711 the altarpiece was sawn into pieces in order to spread it over two altars. Some paintings were damaged in the process; others were lost completely. A number of panels ended up in museums outside Siena.
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