Martin Weinberger. Letter. May 4, 1945 [published in part in Ref. Parke-Bernet 1946], dates it between 1525 and 1529, i.e., after Grünewald's "Saints Erasmus and Maurice" in the Alte Pinakothek, Munich, and before the panel of the altarpiece in the Marktkirche, Halle; calls the latter work "unmistakably inferior" to the MMA picture; notes that it reproduces a famous statue of Saint Maurice made for Cardinal Albrecht of Brandenburg in 1521–25, and believes it was executed probably by Cranach himself from the drawing by Cranach or one of his sons in the Hallesches Heiltumsbuch [see Notes].
World Collectors Annuary 1 (1946–49), p. 155, no. 2033, records the purchase price at the sale of 1946 as $3,100.
Exhibition & Sale. Parke-Bernet, New York. May 15–16, 1946, p. 20, no. 36B, ill., dates it 1525–29, based on Weinberger's letter of 1945 to the owner [see Ref.]; provides provenance information.
Gude Suckale-Redlefsen with the collaboration of Robert Suckale. Mauritius: Der heilige Mohr/The Black Saint Maurice. Houston, 1987, pp. 91–92, 218, 221–22, no. 105, ill. p. 93, as whereabouts unknown; attributes it to Lucas Cranach the Elder and a pupil, calls it the wing of an altarpiece, and dates it about 1522; states that the artist responsible for the drawings in the Hallesches Heiltumsbuch also painted the panel of Saint Maurice in the Marktkirche, Halle, and suggests that he may be Cranach's pupil Simon Franck; provides detailed information on the reliquary statue, which she claims wore the ceremonial armor from Charles V's coronation of 1520, given by him to Cardinal Albrecht.
Andreas Tacke. Der katholische Cranach: Zu zwei Großaufträgen von Lucas Cranach d.Ä., Simon Franck und der Cranach-Werkstatt (1520–1540). Mainz, 1992, pp. 90–91, suggests that it might have served as the left wing of Grünewald's "Saints Erasmus and Maurice," which replaced Cranach's "Entry into Jerusalem" in the cycle of the Passion and saints made for the Halle Stiftskirche (now scattered); judging from a photograph, suggests an attribution to Simon Franck (the Master of the Mass of St. Gregory); due to the narrow format, wonders if the panel has been cut down.
Andreas Tacke in "Essays." Der Kardinal Albrecht von Brandenburg: Renaissancefürst und Mäzen. Exh. cat., Moritzburg, Halle, et al. 2, Regensburg, 2006, p. 211, fig. 11 (color), attributes it to Cranach's workshop, identifying the painter as the same one responsible for the Halle cycle of the Passion and saints; dates it about 1520; calls it the left wing of an altarpiece that was probably once in Halle.
Andreas Tacke. Letter to Maryan Ainsworth. December 4, 2006, expands on his argument outlined in Ref. Tacke 1992.
Maryan W. Ainsworth in "Recent Acquisitions, A Selection: 2006–2007." Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin 65 (Fall 2007), p. 20, ill. (color), believes it was originally the left wing of an altarpiece, probably commissioned by Cardinal Albrecht of Brandenburg for the church at Halle; mentions the life-size reliquary statue of Maurice that was housed in that church and notes that this painting "reproduces this magnificent object".