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Head of a reliquary bust in repoussé copper, chased, engraved, silvered and gilded. Face hairless with realistic features, with prominent eyes hollowed out by a pupil, hemmed eyelids, strong and straight nose, cheeks marked with nasolabial folds, well defined mouth and voluntary chin; head wearing a cap, surrounding the forehead and temples, with a straight edge and horizontal at the back, leaving visible the locks of hair slightly wavy. Central Italy, Lazio or Tuscany, 15th centuryHeight: 15.3 cm - 9.2 cm - Depth: 10.7 cmBase (some deformations, missing cap)Work consulted: B. Montevecchi, Sculture preziose - Oreficeria sacra nelLazio dal XIII al XVIII secolo, Rome, n.d.At the end of the Middle Ages, goldsmiths in Italy, particularly in Lazio, produced several reliquary busts, often made in two parts, the head apart from the bust; this is the case of the bust whose neck was intended to be embedded. As the head in which the relic was placed was the most precious part of the reliquary, the bust was sometimes rebuilt, perhaps as a result of an accident or a change of taste. This is the case of the silver bust kept in the church of Ceprano, a small town in Lazio, the work of a Tuscan artist of the 15th century for the head and of a goldsmith of the town, for the bust and the nimbed cap of the 18th century (fig.).

Location of the item
France - 75009 - paris
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