Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Adoration of the Shepherds

Date:
ca. 1500
Culture:
Northern Italian
Medium:
Jasper and silver
Dimensions:
Overall: 1 7/8in. (4.8cm); visible cameo, diameter: 51 mm
Classification:
Lapidary Work-Gems
Credit Line:
The Milton Weil Collection, 1938
Accession Number:
38.150.22
Not on view
The jasper in this intaglio is not layered, but the engraver used its mottled patternings and variegated colorations, from violet to amber, to add atmospheric effects to his model, much like a cameo carver exploring a stone's best properties. The Renaissance composition is sufficiently large and lucid to be judged without the aid of an impression. The intaglio's original function is not known, but a devout subsequent owner decided to make it into a seal.
Inscription: On banner: GLOR. IN. EXCL. DEO [trans.: Gloria in Excelsis Deo, Glory be to God on high]

Marking: On grip: Swan, in oval (French import mark since 1893)
Milton Weil (until 1938; to MMA)
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