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Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Book Cover Plaque with Christ in Majesty and the Symbols of the Four Evangelists

11th century
Overall: 6 1/4 x 2 15/16 x 1/2 in. (15.9 x 7.5 x 1.2 cm)
Credit Line:
Gift of J. Pierpont Morgan, 1917
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 304
Here the symbols of the four evangelists—the eagle (Saint John), the angel (Saint Matthew), the ox (Saint Luke), and the lion (Saint Mark)—hold an open book containing the first words of each Gospel. The beardless, youthful figure of Christ in the center is rare in depictions from this date.
Inscription: Inscription: IN/PRI/NCI/PIO/ERA/T V(ERBUM) John I:1; LIB(ER)/GE/NE/RA(TIONIS) Matthew I:1, EC/CE/EGO/MIT(TO) Mark I:1; FV/IT/IN/DI(EBVS) Luke I:5.
[ Frédéric Spitzer (d. 1890), Paris (sold 1893)]; J. Pierpont Morgan, London and New York (until 1913); Estate of J. Pierpont Morgan(1913–1917)
La Collection Spitzer: Antiquité, Moyen-Age, Renaissance. Vol. I. Mâcon: Imprimerie Protat Frères, 1890–1891. no. Ivoire 32, p. 34.

Spitzer, Frédéric, ed. La Collection Spitzer: Antiquité -- Moyen-Age -- Renaissance. Vol. 1. Paris: Maison Quantin, 1890–1893. no. Ivoire 32, p. 40, 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. 67, p. 14, pl. III.

Molinier, Émile. Les Ivoires. Histoire générale des arts appliqués à l'industrie, Vol. 1. Paris: Librairie Centrale des Beaux-Arts, 1896. p. 171.

Breck, Joseph. "Pre-Gothic Ivories in the Pierpont Morgan Collection." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, o.s., 15, no. 1 (January 1920). p. 15.

Goldschmidt, Adolph. Die Elfenbeinskulpturen aus der romanischen Zeit, XI.-XIII. Jahrhundert. Vol. 4. Berlin: Bruno Cassirer, 1926. no. 270, p. 55, pl. LXXIII.

Breck, Joseph, and Meyric R. Rogers. The Pierpont Morgan Wing: A Handbook. 2nd ed. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1929. p. 48.

Verdier, Philippe. "The twelfth-century chasse of St. Ode from Amay." Wallraf-Richartz-Jahrbuch: Westdeutsches Jahrbuch für Kunstgeschichte 42 (1981). p. 67, fig. 50, note 198a.

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