View full screen - View 1 of Lot 4. French, Limoges, second quarter 13th century | Reliquary châsse with angels.
4

French, Limoges, second quarter 13th century | Reliquary châsse with angels

Property from a Private Collection

French, Limoges, second quarter 13th century | Reliquary châsse with angels

French, Limoges, second quarter 13th century | Reliquary châsse with angels

Property from a Private Collection

French, Limoges, second quarter 13th century 

Reliquary châsse with angels 


champlevé enamelled and partially gilt copper, on a wood core

14.5 by 14.5 by 5.5cm., 5 5/8 by 5 5/8 by 2¼in.

Overall the condition of the chasse is good, with wear and some minor dirt to the surface consistent with age and handling. There is some slight warping to the metal panels, the lid has some minor, stable fissures to its sides. There are several minor losses to the enamel, particularly around the metal nails. One nail from the top panel with the angels is lost. The lock hinges and nails on the inside are corroded. There is a semicircular metal section applied to the underside, possibly to stabilise the structure. There is wear to the wooden core, consistent with the material. Wear to the gilding throughout, and rubbing to the appliques. There are small losses to the appliques, notably to some of the corners of the crescent moons below the angels. 


The lot is sold in the condition it is in at the time of sale. The condition report is provided to assist you with assessing the condition of the lot and is for guidance only. Any reference to condition in the condition report for the lot does not amount to a full description of condition. The images of the lot form part of the condition report for the lot. Certain images of the lot provided online may not accurately reflect the actual condition of the lot. In particular, the online images may represent colors and shades which are different to the lot's actual color and shades. The condition report for the lot may make reference to particular imperfections of the lot but you should note that the lot may have other faults not expressly referred to in the condition report for the lot or shown in the online images of the lot. The condition report may not refer to all faults, restoration, alteration or adaptation. The condition report is a statement of opinion only. For that reason, the condition report is not an alternative to taking your own professional advice regarding the condition of the lot. NOTWITHSTANDING THIS ONLINE CONDITION REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE/BUSINESS APPLICABLE TO THE RESPECTIVE SALE.

Sotheby's London, 9 July 2009, lot 4
This small reliquary casket displays decorative features which are typical of Limoges production in the first half of the 13th century. A narrative element has been replaced in favour of a decorative motif of six angels on the front, two saints on the sides, and a decorative geometric design on the reverse. As such, it is impossible to identify the saint whose relics the châsse would have originally contained. While the motif of half-length angels within medallions is common, it is rare to see these figures fully applied with only the wings engraved. A comparison for such a composition is found in a châsse in St Petersburg (op. cit. 2011, pp. 94-95). For a similar design of the sides with standing saints, combined with lozenge-motifs on the reverse, see a casket in the Cluny Museum, Paris, illustrated in op. cit. 1950 (pl. 30).

RELATED LITERATURE
M. M. Gauthier, Emaux limousins champlevés des XIIe, XIIe et XIVe siècles, Paris, 1950; M.-M. Gauthier, É. Antoine, and D. Gaborit-Chopin (eds.), Corpus des émaux méridionaux. Tome II. L’apogée 1190-1215, Paris, 2011