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Cross with Pearls

Date:
13th–14th century
Culture:
Byzantine
Medium:
Gold and pearls
Dimensions:
Overall: 1 7/8 x 1 3/16 x 1/4 in. (4.8 x 3 x 0.7 cm) Overall (without modern loop): 1 1/2 x 1 3/16 x 1/4 in. (3.8 x 3 x 0.7 cm)
Classification:
Metalwork-Gold
Credit Line:
Purchase, John C. Weber Gift, in honor of Pete Dandridge, 2005
Accession Number:
2005.38
  • Description

    Byzantine interest in elaborate small religious works made for personal adornment is clearly reflected in this elegant cross. Careful study by the Museum's Objects Conservation Laboratory identified the varied techniques—gold filigree, granulation, and wire laid over sheets of gold—used to create the sophisticated interplay of patterns, light, and shadow on the front and back surfaces of the cross. While its shape, with flared arms ending in roundels, is long known in Byzantium, the metalwork decoration relates the cross to the empire's last centuries. Similar designs appear on earrings and other decorative works of the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries from throughout the Late Byzantine sphere, especially Greece and the Balkans.

  • Provenance

    Private Collection, England (1991 - Ward Purchase); [ Ward & Company Works of Art, New York (until 2005)]

  • See also
    What
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History
    MetPublications
476543

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