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Provenance

Church and convent of Cestello (later Santa Maria Maddalena de' Pazzi), Florence, c. 1503-after 1630.[1] Rodolphe Kann [1844/1845-1905], Paris, before 1907;[2] (Duveen Brothers, Inc., London, New York, and Paris); purchased 3 April 1916 by Joseph E. Widener, Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, as Florentine, fifteenth century;[3] inheritance from Estate of Peter A.B. Widener by gift through power of appointment of Joseph E. Widener, Elkins Park, after purchase by funds of the Estate; gift 1942 to NGA.

Bibliography
1907
Cataloque de la collection Rodolphe Kann; objets d'art. 2 vols. (Objets d'art by Jules Mannheim) Paris, 1907: 1:15, no. 22, as early sixteenth cetury, after Lorenzo di Credi.
1935
Inventory of the Objects d'Art at Lynnewood Hall, Elkins Park, Pennsylvania, The Estate of the Late P.A.B. Widener. Philadelphia, 1935: 49, as Italian (Florence), fifteenth century, probably designed by Lorenzo di Credi.
1942
Works of Art from the Widener Collection. Foreword by David Finley and John Walker. National Gallery of Art, Washington, 1942: 11, as Florentine 15th Century.
1952
Christensen, Erwin O. Objects of Medieval Art from the Widener Collection. National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., 1952: 18.
1965
Marchini, Giuseppe. "Vetri italiani in America." Arte in Europa; scritti di storia dell'arte in onore di Edorado Arslan. 2 vols. Pavia, 1965-1966: 1:431-436.
1975
Luchs, Alison. "Origins of the Widener Annunciation Windows." Studies in the History of Art 7 (1975): 81-89, color repro.
1977
Luchs, Alison. Cestello; a Cistercian Church of the Florentine Renaissance. New York, 1977: 28, 117-119, figs. 88a, b.
1984
Walker, John. National Gallery of Art, Washington. Rev. ed. New York, 1984: 34, color repro. 35.
1985
Luchs, Alison. "Stained Glass Above Renaissance Altars; Figural Windows in Italian Church Architecture from Brunelleschi to Bramante." Zeitschrift für Kunstgeschichte 48 (1985): 200-204, fig. 24.
1987
Stained Glass before 1700 in American Collections; Mid-Atlantic and Southeastern Seaboard States. Corpus Vitrearum Checklist II. Studies in the History of Art 23, monograph ser. I (1987): color repro. 6, 12, 34.
1991
Kopper, Philip. America's National Gallery of Art: A Gift to the Nation. New York, 1991: 196, color repro.
1993
Distelberger, Rudolf, Alison Luchs, Philippe Verdier, and Timonthy H. Wilson. Western Decorative Arts, Part I: Medieval, Renaissance, and Historicizing Styles including Metalwork, Enamels, and Ceramics. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1993: 62-67, color repro. 63.
2000
National Gallery of Art Special Issue. Connaissance des Arts. Paris, 2000:62.
Technical Summary

The window is in good condition. Its first recorded restoration was in 1629, when it waw cleaned, the leading renewed, and "pieces of the fields that were missing" were restored. Its most recent cleaning, by the National Gallery's object conservators, took place in 1982. The window had suffered several losses of the shading painted on pale or nearly clear glass areas such as the angel's face and hands, his white tunic, the dove's wings. To mitigate the otherwise jarring transparency of these areas, the backs of the window was treated with reversible pigment and synthetic resin.

The backs of some border pieces with floral and fruit designs bear painted arabic numerals, in no apparent order. They may reflect a practice recorded later in Vasari's instructions to stained-glass artists to mark each piece of glass with a number "in order to find it easily"; this could be rubbed off after assembly.[1] The numbers on the Washington window, however, is applied in a durable, strongly adhering pigment, possibly fired on. They may be related to a restoration or, more probably to the original process of assembling the border.

[1] See Giorgio Vasari, Vasari on Technique, ed. G. Baldwin Brown, trans. Louisa S. Maclehose (1907; reprint New York, 1960), 168-169; I owe this reference to Shelley G. Sturman.