Inscription

lower center on the tablet of the pedestal: CLAVDIA CASTA FVI NEC VVLGVS CREDIDIT AMEN / ET TAMEN ID QVOD ERAM TESTIS MIHI PRORA PROBAVIT / CONSILIVM ET VIRTVS SVPERANT MATERQVE DEORVM / ALMA PLACET POPVLO ET PER ME HVNC ORATA TVETVR (I was Claudia the chaste, but men trusted not in my troth. And yet that which I was, the prow proved as my witness. Prudence and virtue triumph, and the Mother of the Gods [Cybele], she, the gracious one, is pleasing to the people and protects them when invoked through me)

Provenance

Probably commissioned by the Piccolomini family, Siena. art market, Florence, c. 1850/1860; Louis Charles Timbal [1821-1880], Paris; sold 1872 with his collection to Gustave Dreyfus [1837-1914], Paris;[1] his heirs;[2] purchased 1930 with the entire Dreyfus collection by (Duveen Brothers, Inc., London and New York); purchased 15 December 1936 by The A.W. Mellon Educational and Charitable Trust, Pittsburgh;[3] gift 1937 to NGA.

Exhibition History
1932
Exhibition of Italian Renaissance Art, Wadsworth Atheneum and Morgan Memorial, Hartford, 1932, no. 16, as The Vestal Virgin, Claudia Quinta.
1993
Francesco di Giorgio e il Rinascimento a Siena 1450-1500, Chiesa di Sant'Agostino, Siena, Italy, 1993, no. 103b, repro.
2007
Renaissance Sienna: Art for a City, National Gallery, London, 2007-2008, no. 72, repro.
Bibliography
1931
Mayer, August L. "Die Sammlung Gustave Dreyfus." Pantheon 7 (January 1931):17, repro.
1941
Duveen Brothers. Duveen Pictures in Public Collections of America. New York, 1941: nos. 121-122, repros.
1941
Preliminary Catalogue of Paintings and Sculpture. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1941: 128, 139-140, no. 12.
1942
Book of Illustrations. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1942: 239, repro. 158.
1949
Paintings and Sculpture from the Mellon Collection. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1949 (reprinted 1953 and 1958): 18, repro.
1963
Walker, John. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C. New York, 1963 (reprinted 1964 in French, German, and Spanish): 300, repro.
1965
Summary Catalogue of European Paintings and Sculpture. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1965: 97.
1968
European Paintings and Sculpture, Illustrations. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1968: 85, repro.
1975
European Paintings: An Illustrated Summary Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1975: 254, repro.
1979
Shapley, Fern Rusk. Catalogue of the Italian Paintings. 2 vols. Washington, 1979: 1:345-347, 2:pl. 252.
1985
European Paintings: An Illustrated Catalogue. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1985: 293, repro.
1997
Chelazzi Dini, Giulietta, Alessandro Angelini, and Bernardina Sani. Sienese Painting From Duccio to the Birth of the Baroque. New York, 1997: 318-319.
1998
Apostolos-Cappadona, Diane. "Virgin/Virginity." In Encyclopedia of Comparative Iconography: Themes Depicted in Works of Art. Edited by Helene E. Roberts. 2 vols. Chicago, 1998: 2:905.
2003
Boskovits, Miklós, David Alan Brown, et al. Italian Paintings of the Fifteenth Century. The Systematic Catalogue of the National Gallery of Art. Washington, 2003: 536-539, color repro.
2004
Hand, John Oliver. National Gallery of Art: Master Paintings from the Collection. Washington and New York, 2004: 38, no. 27, color repro.