The Italians are coming to Doylestown.

Masterworks of the Italian Renaissance will be on view the Michener Museum in Doylestown for a limited run.

Forty-two paintings from the Uffizi Gallery in Florence -- a museum with one of the largest and finest collections of Renaissance art in the world -- have been culled for a traveling show. The James A. Michener Museum is one of four institutions in America to host the show, beginning April 21.

All the paintings in "Offering of the Angels: Treasures from the Uffizi," as well as two tapestries and an illuminated manuscript, are from the 14th through 17th centuries. They depict events in the life of Jesus Christ.

"The association between art and the religious was very much the dominant relationship," said Michener director Bruce Katsiff. "It's only in the 18th, 19th, 20th centuries that there's been a division between artists and religion. So much of art has been about service to religion."

Just two years ago, the Michener Museum expanded its gallery space to handle large, traveling shows like this one. The Uffizi exhibition allows the Michener to prove itself on the international stage.

"These paintings are the mother's milk of art history," said Katsiff. "To have works of this caliber -- we're just a country museum. We aspire to behave as the best institutions in the country. It's an important moment for the Michener."

Many of the paintings have never been to America before; some have never been shown publicly, even in Italy.