This magnificent house altar represents a high point in the European goldsmithing and gem-cutting art. Empress Anna, wife of Emperor Matthias, received it as a gift from Duke Charles Emmanuel I of Savoy (1562-1630, ruled from 1580). The rock crystal receptacle contains a thorn from Christs crown. Jasper columns flank a niche of translucent green jasper containing an agate cross set with diamonds and pearls, to which a white jasper agate figure of Christ is attached with diamond nails. On either side of the cross stand enamelled gold figures of Mary and John. The ebony frame is decorated with gold ornamentation, which is almost entirely enamelled and richly set with diamonds, rubies and pearls. The altar was made in the workshop of the Milanese gem cutting family of the Miseroni, who produced several works of outstanding artistic quality and workmanship around 1600. The receptacle, which holds the relic, however, was not part of the original. It, together with some of the ornamental plates, was made in Prague between 1618 and 1622. Empress Anna was so pleased with the piece from Milan that she commissioned the gem cutter and goldsmith Ottavio Miseroni, who had settled in Prague, to complete it and produce a companion piece.
Reliquiar; Altärchen; Andachtsbild
Anfang 17. Jahrhundert
Hartholzkern, Ebenholzauflagen, Jaspis, Achat, Gold, Email, Diamanten, Rubine, Perlen, Bergkristall
H. 44,2 cm, B. 26 cm, T. 10 cm
Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien, Geistliche Schatzkammer
Schatzkammer, GS Kap 221
This object is still without a Art Patron. Accept the patronage and make sure that this cultural treasure is preserved for future generations.
Your donation is a direct and sustainable contribution to the scientific documentation, research, restoration, and presentation of the artworks of the Kunsthistorisches Museum Wien.