Gold Cross Pendant, Gold, Byzantine

Gold Cross Pendant

Date:
500–700
Culture:
Byzantine
Medium:
Gold
Dimensions:
Overall: 3 9/16 x 2 11/16 x 1/2in. (9 x 6.8 x 1.2cm)
Classification:
Metalwork-Gold
Credit Line:
Gift of John C. Weber, 2006
Accession Number:
2006.569
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 301
A wealthy person or a member of the clergy may have worn this elegant cross, the largest known to have been worked in opus interrasile.

As Christianity became the dominant religion in Byzantine society, Christian imagery was increasingly found on jewelry. Crosses appear by the fifth century; the Virgin Mary, saints, angels, and other holy figures became popular in the sixth century. The images were thought to protect the wearer, aid in prayers, and even perform miracles.
I.S. Benzaquen, Gibraltar (in family since 1970); [ Ariadne Galleries, New York (sold 2000)]; John C. Weber, New York (2000-2006)
Papanikola-Bakirtzi, Demetra, ed. Everyday life in Byzantium. Athens: Hellenic Ministry of Culture, Directorate of Byzantine and Post Byzantine Monuments, 2002. no. 509, pp. 405–6.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Recent Acquisitions: A Selection, 2006-2007." The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin, n.s., 65, no. 2 (Fall 2007). p. 10.

A New Yorker's View of the World: The John C. Weber Collection. Koka: Miho Museum, 2015. no. 11, pp. 72–73.