Overall: 17 1/2 x 16 x 6 1/4 in. (44.5 x 40.6 x 15.9 cm)
Bequest of Susan Vanderpoel Clark, 1967
On view at The Met Cloisters in Gallery 16
Medieval reliquaries often took the form of the body parts they were created to contain. Bust reliquaries for the skulls of saints were placed on or near altars and, by the late Middle Ages, were assembled in large numbers in some church sanctuaries, from Cologne in the north to Ubeda in southern Spain. These examples, with elaborate jewels, beautifully braided hair, and richly decorated gowns, probably represent companions of the virgin martyr Saint Ursula, believed to have been eleven thousand in number. The small glazed medallions resembling jewelry once displayed additional relics. On particular feast days, such busts could be carried in processions.
Louis Mohl, Paris (until 1912); his sale, Hôtel Drouot, Paris (May 14, 1912, no. 82); Stephen C. Clark (1882–1960)
Bois sculptés principalement des XVe et XVIe siècles [...] Composant la Collection de Feu M. Louis Mohl. Paris: Hôtel Drouot, May 14, 1912. no. 82, p. 24, ill.
Wixom, William D. "Medieval Sculpture at The Cloisters." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 46, no. 3 (Winter 1988-1989). p. 41.
Little, Charles T., ed. Set in Stone: The Face in Medieval Sculpture. New York, New Haven, and London: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2006. no. 77, pp. 188-190.
Bagnoli, Martina, Holger A. Klein, C. Griffith Mann, and James Robinson, ed. Treasures of Heaven: Saints, Relics, and Devotion in Medieval Europe. Cleveland, Baltimore, and London: Cleveland Museum of Art, 2010. no. 107, p. 194.
Artist: Workshop of Niclaus Gerhaert von Leyden (North Netherlandish, active Strasbourg, ca. 1462–died 1473 Vienna)Date: ca. 1465Medium: Walnut with paint and gildingAccession: 17.190.1735On view in:Gallery 305
Artist: Workshop of Niclaus Gerhaert von Leyden (North Netherlandish, active Strasbourg, ca. 1462–died 1473 Vienna)Date: ca. 1465Medium: Walnut with paint and gilding; linden baseAccession: 17.190.1734On view in:Gallery 305