After the imperial regalia were taken to Nuremberg in 1424, the insignia and relics were put on public display each year. At the Feast of the Holy Lance and Nails, clerics presented the imperial regalia as relics of Charlemagne along with various relics of the Apostles, saints and the Passion. Among the latter, by 1459 at the latest, were also the present fragments of cloth, which are said to be, respectively, part of the tablecloth from the Last Supper and a piece of the apron that Christ was wearing as he washed the feet of his disciples. The town council of Nuremberg had two identical reliquaries made for them in 1518. On the underside of each foot are inscribed the names of Anton Tucher, Hieronymus Ebner and Martin Geuder, who commissioned the work for the city of Nuremberg and whose honourable position it was to guard the keys to the relics, which were kept behind multiple locked doors. The body of the reliquary is flanked by the two patron saints of Nuremberg, Sebaldus and Laurence. The assayer's mark on the base reveals that the two reliquaries were made in Nuremberg. A notice in the city accounts indicates a connection to one of the most important workshops in Nuremberg at the time, that of the Krug family, and thus Hans Krug the Younger may be assumed to be the master who created them. In a manner that was characteristic of the era of Albrecht Dürer, the design and details link traditional late-Gothic elements with the new formal language of the Renaissance. The latter may be seen especially in the engraved decoration and the three lively putto-like boys playing above the round arch. On the back of the vessels are engraved the respective scenes of the Last Supper and of Jesus washing the feet of his disciples. The leather cases for the two vessels have also been preserved.
Silber, vergoldet, Edelsteine, Perlen
H. 55,9 cm
"+ ANNO 1518 HER ANTHONI TVCHER HER IERONIMVS EBNER VN(D) HER MERTENI GEVDER DER ZEIT LOSSVNGER VND OBERSTE HOVBTLEVT"
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Weltliche Schatzkammer
Schatzkammer, WS XIII 22 und WS XIII 23
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