Help us bring life to art, and art to lives. Make a donation.

close_button
Art/ Collection/ Art Object
{{img.publicCaption}}

Cluster Brooch with Letters Spelling "Amor"

Date:
mid-15th century
Culture:
French
Medium:
Gold, pearl, emerald, silver pin
Dimensions:
Overall: 1 1/8 x 15/16 x 9/16 in. (2.9 x 2.4 x 1.4 cm)
Classification:
Metalwork-Gold
Credit Line:
The Cloisters Collection, 1957
Accession Number:
57.26.1
On view at The Met Cloisters in Gallery 14
This gold cluster jewel includes the Latin word amor (love) in delicate gold letters. It could have been worn either as a pendant or a brooch, and in portraits of young women many similar jewels are seen in their hair or at the shoulder or neck. Expensive jewelry played an important role in betrothal and marriage, and the groom gave brooches to the bride as tokens of love. In 1447, for example, Marco Parenti gave his betrothed, Caterina Strozzi, a golden brooch with two sapphires and three pearls to be worn on her shoulder.
H. Garthe(dates unknown) ; Eugen Felix, Leipzig (sold 1886) ; [his sale, J. M. Heberle, Cologne (October 25-30, 1886, no. 460)] ; said to be in the collection of Dr. Albert Figdor, Vienna (?) ; [ John Hunt, Drumleck Baily, Dublin (sold 1957)]
Los Angeles County Museum of Art. "The Middle Ages: Treasures from The Cloisters and The Metropolitan Museum of Art," January 18, 1970–March 29, 1970.

Chicago. Art Institute of Chicago. "The Middle Ages: Treasures from The Cloisters and The Metropolitan Museum of Art," May 16, 1970–July 5, 1970.

New York. The Cloisters Museum & Gardens. "The Secular Spirit: Life and Art at the End of the Middle Ages," March 28, 1975–June 15, 1975.

New York. The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Love and Marriage in Renaissance Italy," November 11, 2008–February 16, 2009.

Ft. Worth, TX. Kimbell Art Museum. "Love and Marriage in Renaissance Italy," March 15, 2009–June 14, 2009.

Kunst-Sammlung des Herrn Eugen Felix. Cologne: J. M. Heberle, October 25–30, 1886. no. 460, p. 89, ill.

Ostoia, Vera K. The Middle Ages: Treasures from the Cloisters and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Los Angeles: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1969. no. 118, pp. 249, 262.

Husband, Timothy B., and Jane Hayward, ed. The Secular Spirit: Life and Art at the End of the Middle Ages. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1975. no. 96, pp. 85, 89, fig. 4.

Brown, Katharine R. "Six Gothic Brooches at The Cloisters." In The Cloisters: Studies in Honor of the Fiftieth Anniversary, edited by Elizabeth C. Parker. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1992. pp. 408-19, fig. 10a-b.

Bayer, Andrea, ed. Art and Love in Renaissance Italy. New York and New Haven: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2008. no. 34, pp. 102-103.



Related Objects

Saltcellar

Date: mid-13th century Medium: Gold, rock crystal, emeralds, pearls, spinel or balas rubies Accession: 1983.434 On view in:Gallery 14

Amatory Brooch

Date: ca. 1340–60 Medium: Gold and freshwater pearl Accession: 1986.386 On view in:Gallery 14

Roundel with Playing at Quintain

Date: ca. 1500 Medium: Colorless glass, vitreous paint and silver stain Accession: 1980.223.6 On view in:Gallery 10

The Belles Heures of Jean de France, duc de Berry

Artist: The Limbourg Brothers (Franco-Netherlandish, active France, by 1399–1416) Date: 1405–1408/1409 Medium: Tempera, gold, and ink on vellum Accession: 54.1.1a, b On view in:Gallery 13

The Cloisters Playing Cards

Date: ca. 1475–80 Medium: Paper (four layers of pasteboard) with pen and ink, opaque paint, glazes, and applied silver and gold Accession: 1983.515.1–.52 On view in:Gallery 13