Art/ Collection/ Collection/ Art Object
{{img.publicCaption}}

The Fieschi Morgan Staurotheke

Date:
early 9th century
Geography:
Made in Constantinople (?)
Culture:
Byzantine
Medium:
Gilded silver, gold, enamel worked in cloisonné, and niello
Dimensions:
Overall (with lid): 1 1/16 x 4 1/16 x 2 13/16 in. (2.7 x 10.3 x 7.1 cm) lid only: 2 13/16 x 3 7/8 x 1/8 in. (7.1 x 9.8 x 0.3 cm) vessel only: 7/8 x 2 15/16 x 4 in. (2.2 x 7.5 x 10.1 cm)
Classification:
Enamels-Cloisonné
Credit Line:
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
Accession Number:
17.190.715a, b
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 303
Elaborately worked in cloisonné enamel, the lid of this box displays Christ on the cross wearing the colobium (sleeveless or short-sleeve tunic) associated with early images of the Crucifixion. Christ stands erect, his eyes wide open. His posture, the sun and the moon on either side of his head, and the flowers growing at the base of the cross express Christ’s triumph over death. Beside him the Virgin and John the Theologian raise their hands to their faces in a gesture of mourning. Twenty-seven busts of saints appear on the lid and sides of the box. Worked in niello on the undersurface of the lid are four scenes from the life of Christ—the Annunciation, the Nativity, the Crucifixion, and the Anastasis (Descent into Hell). The interior of the box houses a cross-shaped container for the relic, with the remaining spaces possibly meant to contain other relics associated with the Holy Land. The patterns on the base resemble a book cover, perhaps a reference to the Gospels, which contain the story of the Crucifixion. The box is a testament to the sacrifice of Christ and the promise of salvation through his death.
Inscription: Inscribed in Greek: [On lid] Here is your son...Here is your Mother (on either side of Christ's head); Jesus; Mother of God; John; [on lid moving clockwise from upper left] Saint Demetrios; Saint Eustathios; Saint Lawrence; Luke; Mark; Thomas; James; Saint Damianos; Saint Kosmas; Saint Gregory the Miracle-Worker; Bartholomew; Matthew; Jude; Simon; [on side moving clockwise from upper left] Saint Anastasios; Saint Nicholas; Saint Platon; Saint Theodore; Saint Prokopios; Saint George; Saint Merkourios; Saint Eustrastios; Saint Panteleimon; Saint Andrew; Saint John; Saint Paul; Saint Peter; [inside lid] Hail, full of grace!; The Nativity; Here is your son...Here is your mother.
Pope Innocent IV (Sinibaldo Fieschi)(r. 1243-54) and descendants; Baron Albert Oppenheim, Cologne(until 1904); [ Jacques Seligmann, Paris and New York (sold 1906)]; J. Pierpont Morgan, London and New York (1906-13); Estate of J. Pierpont Morgan(1913-17)
Bock, Franz. Die byzantinischen Zellenschmelze der Sammlung Dr. Alex. von Swenigorodskoï und das darüber veröffentlichte Prachtwerk: Archäologisch-kunstgeschichtliche Studie. Aachen: La Ruelle'sche Accidenzdruckerei, 1896. pp. 169-79, pl. VIII, fig. 1-2.

Molinier, Émile. L'orfèvrerie religieuse et civile du Ve à la fin du XVe siècle. Histoire générale des arts appliqués à l'industrie, Vol. 4. Paris: E. Levy, 1902. pp. 43-44.

Molinier, Émile. Collection du Baron Albert Oppenheim: Tableaux et objets d'art, catalogue précédé d'une introduction. Paris: Librairie Centrale des Beaux-Arts, 1904. no. 130, p. 55, pl. LXIX.

Falke, Otto von. Deutsche Schmelzarbeiten des Mittelalters, und andere Kunstwerkeder Kunst-Historischen Ausstellung zu Düsseldorf, 1902. Frankfurt: Joseph Baer & Co., 1904. pp. 107, 123, pl. 2.

"The Oppenheim Collection at South Kensington Museum." The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs 9, no. 40 (July 1906). p. 228.

Day, Lewis Foreman. Enamelling: A Comparative Account of the Development and Practice of the Art. London and New York: B. T. Batsford, 1907. pp. 31-32, fig. 19.

Dalton, O. M. "Byzantine Enamels in Mr. Pierpont Morgan's Collection." The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs 21, no. 110 (May 1912). pp. 65-69, pl. V.

Williamson, G.C. "The Oppenheim Reliquary and its Contents." The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs 23, no. 125 (August 1913). pp. 296, 301, ill. p. 293.

Breck, Joseph, ed. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Pierpont Morgan Wing: A Brief Guide to the Art of the Renaissance, Medieval and Earlier Periods. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1918. ill. p. 5.

Rosenberg, Marc. Geschichte der Goldschmiedekunst auf technischer Grundlage: Volume 3, Zellenschmelz III. Die Frühdenkmäler. Vol. 3. Frankfurt: Joseph Baer & Co., 1922. pp. 31-38.

von Falke, Otto. "Zellenschmelz." Belvedere: illustrierte Zeitschrift für Kunstsammler 1 (1922). pp. 157, 160, pl. 79, fig. 1.

Breck, Joseph, and Meyric R. Rogers. The Pierpont Morgan Wing: A Handbook. 1st ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1925. pp. 47, 56, fig. 29, ill. p. 55.

Breck, Joseph, and Meyric R. Rogers. The Pierpont Morgan Wing: A Handbook. 2nd ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1929. p. 47, 56, fig. 29, ill. p. 55.

Reil, Johannes. Christus am Kreuz in der Bildkunst der Karolingerzeit. Studien über christliche Denkmäler, Vol. 21. Leipzig: Dieterich'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1930. p. 24.

Zaloziecky, Wladimir. "Das byzantinische Kunstgewerbe in der mittelalterlichen und spätmittelalterlichen Periode." In Geschichte des Kunstgewerbes aller Zeiten und Völker, edited by Helmuth Theodor Bossert. Vol. 5. Berlin: E. Wasmuth, 1932. p. 131, fig. 1.

Bárány-Oberschall, Magda von. "Konstantinos Monomachos Császár Koronája / The Crown of the Emperor Constantine Monomachos." Archaeologia Hungarica 22 (1937). pp. 12 (Hungarian text), 56 (English text), fig. 70.

Braun, Joseph. Die Reliquiare des christlichen Kultes und ihre Entwicklung. Freiburg im Breisgau: Verlag Herder, 1940. pp. 147, 152, 157, pl. 15, fig. 51.

Forsyth, William H. "Mediaeval Enamels in a New Installation." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 4, no. 9 (May 1946). p. 232, ill. p. 233.

Berliner, Rudolf. "A Palestinian Reliquary Cross of about 590." Museum Notes, Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design 9, no. 3 (March 1952). [p. 4].

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Art Treasures of the Metropolitan: A Selection from the European and Asiatic Collections of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: H.N. Abrams, 1952. no. 50–51, pp. 58, 221.

Bárány-Oberschall, Magda von. "Byzantinische Pektoralkreuze aus ungarischen Funden." Wandlungen christlicher Kunst im Mittelalter, Forschungen zur Kunstgeschichte und christlichen Archäologie, 2 (1953). pp. 225-26, fig. 70.

Rorimer, James J., and William Holmes Forsyth. "The Medieval Galleries." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 12, no. 6 (February 1954). p. 127.

Frolow, Anatole. "Une Staurotheque Byzantine." Cahiers Archéologiques 8 (1956). pp. 231–32.

Frolow, Anatole. "The Veneration of the Relic of the True Cross at the End of the Sixth and the Beginning of the Seventh Centuries." St. Vladimir's Seminary Quarterly 2, no. 1 (Winter 1958). pp. 3-6.

Steingräber, Erich. "Email." Reallexikon zur Deutschen Kunstgeschichte 5 (1959). p. 14.

Thoby, Paul. Le crucifix, des origines au Concile de Trente. Nantes: Bellanger, 1959. no. 26, pp. 33, 242, fig. 26, pl. IX.

Frolow, Anatole. "Le Culte de la relique de la Vraie Croix à la fin du VIe et au début du VIle siècles." Byzantinoslavica 22 (1961). pp. 324-27, fig. 3.

Seligman, Germain. Merchants of Art: 1880–1960, Eighty Years of Professional Collecting. New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, 1961. p. 70.

Lucchesi Palli, Elisabetta. "Der syrisch-palästinensische Darstellungstypus der Höllenfahrt Christi." Römische Quartalschrift für christliche Altertumskunde und Kirchengeschichte 57 (1962). pp. 250-67, pl. 17a, 18a.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Guide to the Collections: Medieval Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1962. fig. 11.

Zalesskaya, Vera N. "Cast' bronzovogo kresta-skladnja iz Chersonesa." Vizantijskij vremennik: Byzantina chronika 25 (1964). pp. 170, 172.

Byzantine Art, a[n] European Art. Catalogue of the Ninth Exhibition of the Council of Europe. Athens: Zappeion Exhibition Hall, 1964. p. 392.

Wessel, Klaus. Die byzantinische Emailkunst vom 5. bis 13. Jahrhundert. Recklinghausen: Aurel Bongers, 1967. no. 5, pp. 44-46, ill. p. 49.

Schiller, Gertrud. Ikonographie der christlichen Kunst. Vol. 3. Gütersloh, Germany: Gütersloher Verlagshaus Gerd Mohn, 1971. pp. 47, 277, fig. 101, ill. p. 348.

Beeson, Nora B., ed. Guide to The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1972. no. 18, p. 213, fig. 18.

Davis-Weyer, Caecilia. "Die ältesten Darstellungen der Hadesfahrt Christi, des Evangelium Nikodemi und ein Mosaik der Zeno-Kapelle." In Roma e l'età carolingia: Atti delle giornate di studio, 3-8 maggio, 1976, edited by Instituto Nazionale di Archeologia e Storia dell'Arte. Rome: Multigrafica Editrice, 1976. pp. 183-84, fig. 187, (fig. p. 71).

Doncheva, Liudmila. "Une croix pectorale-reliquaire en or récemment trouvée à Pliska." Cahiers Archéologiques 25 (1976). pp. 59-66.

Weitzmann, Kurt. "The Late Roman World." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 35, no. 2 (Autumn 1977). no. 85, pp. 96-97, fig. 85.

Knudsen-Morgan, Sandra. "The Age of Spirituality." Apollo 107, no. 191 (January 1978). p. 19, fig. 20.

Weitzmann, Kurt, ed. Age of Spirituality: Late Antique and Early Christian Art, Third to Seventh Century. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1979. no. 574, pp. 634-636.

Kitzinger, Ernst. "Christian Imagery: Growth and Impact." In Age of Spirituality: A Symposium, edited by Kurt Weitzmann. New York and Princeton, New Jersey: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1980. pp. 155–56, fig. 20a-b.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide, edited by Kathleen Howard. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1983. no. 14, p. 343.

Kartsonis, Anna D. Anastasis: The Making of an Image. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1986. pp. 94-125, fig. 24a-i.

Husband, Timothy B., and Charles T. Little. Europe in the Middle Ages. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1987. no. 31, pp. 40-41.

Burn, Barbara, ed. The Life of Christ: Images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1989. ill. p. 93.

Haseloff, Günther. Email im frühen Mittelalter: frühchristliche Kunst von der Spätantike bis zu den Karolingern. Marburg: Hitzeroth, 1990. pp. 34-35, fig. 41, ill. p. 65.

Surmann, Ulrike. Studien zur ottonischen Elfenbeinplastik in Metz und Trier: Nordenfalks Sakramentar- und Evangeliargruppe. Bonn: Verlag M. Wehle, 1990. pp. 194-95, fig. 70.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide, edited by Kathleen Howard. 2nd ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1994. no. 15, p. 377.

Evans, Helen C., and William D. Wixom, ed. The Glory of Byzantium: Art and Culture of the Middle Byzantine Era, A.D. 843–1261. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1997. no. 34, pp. 74-5.

Brandt, Michael, and Arne Effenberger, ed. Byzanz: die Macht der Bilder; Katalog zur Ausstellung im Dom-Museum Hildesheim. Hildesheim: Dom-Museums Hildesheim, 1998. no. 18, pp. 155, fig. 38, 39a-c.

Mietke, Gabriele. "Wundertätige Pilgerandenken, Reliquien und ihr Bildschmuck." In Byzanz: die Macht der Bilder; Katalog zur Ausstellung im Dom-Museum Hildesheim, edited by Michael Brandt, and Arne Effenberger. Hildesheim: Dom-Museums Hildesheim, 1998. no. 18, pp. 49-55, fig. 38, 39a-c.

Strouse, Jean. "J. Pierpont Morgan, Financier and Collector." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 57, no. 3 (Winter 2000). pp. 22-23, fig. 21, 22.

Vassilaki, Maria, ed. The Mother of God: Representations of the Virgin in Byzantine Art. Milan and Athens: Skira Editore, 2000. pp. 34-38.

Eisenberg, Jerome M. "The New Byzantine Galleries at the Metropolitan Museum of Art." Minerva 12, no. 3 (2001). pp. 26-28, fig. 17.

Evans, Helen C., Melanie Holcomb, and Robert Hallman. "The Arts of Byzantium." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 58, no. 4 (Spring 2001). p. 39.

Kahsnitz, Rainer. "Das goldene Kreuz, genannt ‘Morgengabe’, im Kloster auf dem Michelsberg in Bamberg." In Hortulus floridus Bambergensis: Studien zur fränkischen Kunst- und Kulturgeschichte. Renate Baumgärtel-Fleischmann zum 4. Mai 2002, edited by Werner Taegert. Petersberg: Michael Imhof Verlag, 2004. pp. 117-18, 121, fig. 11-12.

Wixom, William D. "Medieval Sculpture at the Metropolitan: 800 to 1400." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 62, no. 4 (2005). p. 20.

Cormack, Robin, and Maria Vassilaki, ed. Byzantium 330–1453. London: Royal Academy of Arts, 2008. no. 52, pp. 390-391, ill. p. 102.

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. 37, pp. 81–82.

Evans, Helen C., and Brandie Ratliff, ed. Byzantium and Islam: Age of Transition, 7th–9th century. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2012. no. 54, p. 88.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Guide. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 2012. p. 184.

Bevilacqua, Livia. Arte e artistocrazia a Bisanzio nell'eta' dei Macedoni. Università degli Studi - La Sapienza. Istituto di Storia dell'Arte Medioevale e Moderna, 2013. pp. 96 n. 69, 159, 166 n. 13, fig. 76.

Labatt, Annie Montgomery. "The Transmission of Images in the Mediterranean." In Age of Transition: Byzantine Culture in the Islamic World, edited by Helen C. Evans. New York: Yale University Press, 2015. pp. 3-4, 71-73, fig. 1.



Related Objects

Medallion with Saint George from an Icon Frame

Date: ca. 1100 Medium: Gold, silver, and enamel worked in cloisonné Accession: 17.190.674 On view in:Gallery 303

Medallion with Saint John the Evangelist from an Icon Frame

Date: ca. 1100 Medium: Gold, silver, and enamel worked in cloisonné Accession: 17.190.676 On view in:Gallery 303

Medallion with Saint John the Baptist from an Icon Frame

Date: ca. 1100 Medium: Gold, silver, and enamel worked in cloisonné Accession: 17.190.677 On view in:Gallery 303

Medallion with Saint Peter from an Icon Frame

Date: ca. 1100 Medium: Gold, silver, and enamel worked in cloisonné Accession: 17.190.670 On view in:Gallery 303

Medallion with Saint Luke from an Icon Frame

Date: ca. 1100 Medium: Gold, silver, and enamel worked in cloisonné Accession: 17.190.671 On view in:Gallery 303