Scenes from the Legend of Saint Vincent of Saragossa and the History of His Relics

Date: ca. 1245–47

Geography: Made in Paris, France

Culture: French

Medium: Pot-metal glass, vitreous paint, and lead

Dimensions: Overall: 147 x 43 1/2in. (373.4 x 110.5cm)
Overall (Installation Opening): 144 x 41 1/2 in. (365.8 x 105.4 cm)

Classification: Glass-Stained

Credit Line: Gift of George D. Pratt, 1924

Accession Number: 24.167a-k


These panels were originally part of two large windows depicting the martyrdom of the deacon, Saint Vincent of Saragossa (d. 304), and the history of his relics, from the Church of Saint-Germain-des-Prés in Paris. The monks of Saint-Germain-des-Prés held a special devotion for Vincent—their abbey had been founded to receive a relic of the saint's tunic, which had been transported from Spain by the Merovingian king Childebert I. The king and his brother Chlotar are shown here on horseback. The remaining scenes illustrate Saint Vincent's confrontations with the Roman proconsul Dacian. Bold silhouettes define tall, lithe figures, whose prominent gestures convey a narrative emphasizing Saint Vincent as an exemplar of Christian piety in defiance of pagan authority.