Art/ Collection/ Art Object


ca. 1250–75
Made in possibly Paris, France
North French
Ivory, paint, gilding with metal mounts
wings open: 9 1/16 × 5 1/2 × 1 3/16 in. (23 × 14 × 3 cm)
Other (wings closed): 9 1/16 × 3 3/8 × 1 9/16 in. (23 × 8.5 × 4 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 304
Portable ivory shrines may have facilitated the transmission of style and composition throughout medieval Europe. This miniature example echoes larger altarpieces or tabernacles, such as those from the abbey church of Saint-Denis outside Paris and the cathedral at Pisa. Images of the Crucifixion and the Glorification of the Virgin are the central focus. The figures are flanked by the personifications Church and Synagogue (above) and by Saints Paul and Peter (below).
Michel Boy, Paris; Frédéric Spitzer, Paris (sold 1893); J. Pierpont Morgan (American), London and New York (until 1917)
University Park, PA. Palmer Museum of Art. "Medieval Art in America: Patterns of Collecting, 1800–940," January 9, 1996–May 26, 1996.

La Collection Spitzer: Antiquité, Moyen-Age, Renaissance. Vol. I. Mâcon: Imprimerie Protat Frères, 1890–1891. no. Ivoire 63, p. 45.

Spitzer, Frédéric, ed. La Collection Spitzer: Antiquité -- Moyen-Age -- Renaissance. Vol. 1. Paris: Maison Quantin, 1890–1893. no. Ivoire 63, p. 48, ill. in text.

Catalogue des objets d'art et de haute curiosité: antiques, du moyen-âge & de la renaissance: composant l'importante et précieuse Collection Spitzer. Vol. 1. Paris: Chevallier and Mannheim, April 17–June 16, 1893. no. 98, p. 19, pl. III.

Molinier, Émile. Les Ivoires. Histoire générale des arts appliqués à l'industrie, Vol. 1. Paris: Librairie Centrale des Beaux-Arts, 1896. p. 189.

Koechlin, R. "Quelques ateliers d'ivoiriers français aux XIIIe et XIVe siècles (premier article)." Gazette des Beaux-Arts, 3rd ser., 34, no. 5 (November 1905). pp. 373, 377.

Koechlin, Raymond. Les Ivoires Gothiques Français: Volume I, Text. Paris: Editions Auguste Picard, 1924. no. 52, pp. 85,89.

Koechlin, Raymond. Les Ivoires Gothiques Français: Volume II, Catalogue. Paris: Editions Auguste Picard, 1924. no. 52, pp. 23–24.

Koechlin, Raymond. Les Ivoires Gothiques Français: Volume III, Plates. Paris: Editions Auguste Picard, 1924. no. 52, pl. XX.

Morey, Charles Rufus. Gli oggetti di avorio e di osso del Museo Sacro Vaticano. Catalogo del Museo sacro della Biblioteca apostolica vaticana, Vol. 4. Vatican City: Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, 1936. pp. 28–29, fig. 23.

Morey, C.R. "Italian Gothic Ivories." In Medieval Studies in Memory of A. Kingsley Porter, edited by Wilhelm R. W. Koehler. Vol. I. Cambridge, Mass: Harvard University Press, 1939. no. XII, p. 186, fig. 6.

Seidel, Max. "'Opus Heburneum:' Entdeckung einer Elfenbeinskulptur von Giovanni Pisano." Pantheon 42, no. 3 (1984). pp. 223, 228, fig. 16.

Randall Jr., Richard H. Masterpieces of Ivory from the Walters Art Gallery. Walters Art Gallery, 1985. p. 206.

Smith, Elizabeth Bradford, ed. Medieval Art in America: Patterns of Collecting, 1800–1940. University Park, Pa.: Palmer Museum of Art, Pennsylvania State University, 1996. no. 35, p. 150, ill. p. 11.

Gardner, Julian. "The Artistic Patronage of Boniface VIII: the Perugian Inventory of the Papal Treasure of 1311." Römisches Jahrbuch der Bibliotheca Hertziana 34 (2001-2002). pp. 69-86, fig. 11.

Christiansen, Keith. "Duccio and the Origins of Western Painting." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 66, no. 1 (2008). p. 42, fig. 35.

Guerin, Sarah Margaret. "'Tears of Compunction': French Gothic Ivories in Devotional Practice." PhD diss., University of Toronto, 2009. pp. 92, 151–54, 365–66, pl. 19a–e.

Williamson, Paul, and Glyn Davies. Medieval Ivory Carvings, 1200–1550. Vol. 1. London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 2014. p. 167.

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