Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Book of plaques with scenes from the Passion

17th century
Ivory and copper-gilt
Overall (closed): 3 × 1 5/8 in. (7.6 × 4.1 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
Accession Number:
Not on view
The gilded copper cover of this foldout "book" is incised with the same designs that would have decorated a genuine book cover. By contemplating the minutely carved ivory images, its owner could carry the suffering of Christ with him at all times. The substantial weight of the sharp-edged copper hanging from the waist or neck would also make it uncomfortable to carry-an additional reminder of His sacrifice.
J. Pierpont Morgan (until 1917; to MMA)
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