The most important pieces include:
Maiolica plate from the workshop of Guido Durantino, Urbino, 1535: one of 19 surviving pieces of a large service made for Anne de Montmorency, Constable of France for his Chateau at Écouen, north of Paris.
Terracotta model by Bandini for figure of ‘Architecture’ on Michelangelo’s tomb, Santa Croce, Florence designed by Giorgio Vasari, 1564 (model for companion figure in V&A).
Bronze statuette of Mercury said to come from the Medici-Riccardi Palace in Florence, after an original by Giovanni Bologna (Giambologna), Museo Civico, Bologna. Another celebrated versions are in the Bargello (Florence), Vienna and Naples. The Soane statuette may be by Giambologna or an assistant, perhaps Pietro Tacca (1577-1640).
Italian bronze statuette of Hercules (c.1540) described by Sir John Pope-Hennessy as ‘quite exceptionally high quality’, perhaps by Pieriono da Vinci. Relates to other examples in the Casa Buonarroti and Bargello (Florence) and the Louvre.
The Naseby Jewel: hat pin with a figure of a cavalier in the centre, studded with rubies dating from c.1630, said to have been dropped by Charles I at the battle of Naseby.