Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Aquamanile in the Form of a Soldier on Horseback

early 15th century
Made in Nuremberg, Germany
Copper alloy
Overall: 10 9/16 x 9 15/16 x 3 3/4 in. (26.8 x 25.3 x 9.5 cm), 4.599lb. (2086g)
Thickness PD: 3/25 in. (0.3 cm)
Metalwork-Copper alloy
Credit Line:
The Cloisters Collection, 1947
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Cloisters in Gallery 10
This elaborate water vessel was intended for handwashing. A specialty of metalworkers in German-speaking lands for centuries—from the twelfth to the fifteenth—they are called aquamanilia, from the Latin words for water (aqua) and hand (manus).

A clue to the date of this figure is the rider’s helmet, a type without visor that came into fashion in northern Italy around 1410.
Baron Arthur Schickler 1828–1919, Paris and Château Martinvast ; Hubert de Pourtalès, Château Martinvast, Normandy (sold 1936) ; [ Brummer Gallery (1936, through Guiraud Frères–sold 1947)]
New York. Bard Graduate Center: Decorative Arts, Design History, Material Culture. "Lions, Dragons, and Other Beasts: Aquamanilia of the Middle Ages. Vessels for Church and Table," July 12, 2006–October 15, 2006.

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