Boston’s Museum of Fine Arts has settled a legal dispute with the estate of a Jewish woman whose collection of 18th century porcelain figurines was sold in Germany in the late 1930s amid Nazi persecution of Jews.
Under terms of the agreement, the museum will pay the estate of Emma Budge an undisclosed sum to retain the pieces.
The seven figurines, which depict Italian commedia dell’arte characters, were auctioned after Budge’s death in 1937. They were bequeathed to the museum in 2006.
Victoria Reed, the museum’s curator of provenance, tells The Boston Globe that because of Nazi persecution Budge’s heirs likely never saw proceeds of the sale and the museum had an obligation to make up for that injustice.
A lawyer for Budge’s estate says the heirs are happy with the resolution.