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Cameos
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Cameos

Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century. Agate, Chalcedony, Cowry, Vitreous paste Not on display

The thirteen cameos that have been preserved come from at least two different stolen vessels (nos. 52 and 58 in Arbeteta’s catalogue). No. 12 in this set has individualised treatment (see separate entry, no. O-41/12). Of various sizes and materials, they mostly depict busts of men, women and children. One of the cameos (O-41/5) represents Philosophy, recognisable by the gesture of pointing upwards with the left hand. Several reproduce effigies of historical personages. One example is the portrait of Henry IV of France crowned with laurel (O-41/11), with an inscription referring to the king. Another portrays a lady in court dress (O-41/8). Several similar examples of this model exist, and have been regarded as more or less stylised portraits of Mary, Queen of Scots.

Cameos and engraved gems were collected by princes and noblemen, especially during the Renaissance. Fascinated by the art of glyptics, they would exhibit them in their chambers of wonders, where they habitually appeared on jewellery and occasionally in the ornamentation of vases and mirrors. Value was placed above all on the most ancient pieces, especially those of classical origin, and also those by great artists of the Renaissance and later periods. The most usual subjects were mythological scenes and portraits. The group preserved here comes from at least two different vessels with globular bodies, both formed by two pieces of agate, each in the shape of a flattened bowl, joined by a broad pierced central band into which the cameos were set. Some of them can be recognised in photographs taken before the robbery: Juan Laurent y Minier. Vase à perfums en agate, montures d’argent doré avec camées, hacia 1879, Museo del Prado (HF835/26 and Juan Laurent y Minier, Vase à parfums agate montures d’argent doré avec émaux et camées, hacia 1879, Museo del Prado (HF835/24) (L. Arbeteta, in press).

Technical data

Related artworks

Case for a missing globular vessel
Leather, Wood, Metal, Cloth, 1670 - 1711
Missing globular vessel
Albumen on photographic paper, Ca. 1879
Bust of a woman
Chalcedony, Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Bust of a bearded man
Chalcedony, Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Bust of a woman
Agate, Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Bust of a woman in 16th century dress
Cowry, Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Philosophy
Agate, Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Bust of a man
Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Bust of a child
Chalcedony, Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Inventory number
O000041
Author
Anonymous
Title
Cameos
Date
Early Finales del siglo XVI - XVII century
Technique
Carved
Medium
Agate; Chalcedony; Cowry; Vitreous paste
Series
Tesoro del Delfín
Provenance
Royal Collection

Bibliography +

Angulo Íñiguez, Diego, Catálogo de las Alhajas del Delfín, Museo del Prado, Madrid, 1989 (ed.rev), pp. 84-85.

Arbeteta Mira, Letizia, El tesoro del Delfín: alhajas de Felipe V recibidas por herencia de su padre Luis, Gran Delfín de Francia, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid, 2001, pp. 204,205.

Arbeteta, L. Azcue, L., El Tesoro del Delfín, Museo Nacional del Prado, 2018, 2018.

There are no temporary exhibitions related to this work

Update date: 02-05-2019 | Registry created on 26-11-2015

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