17 December 2011

M for Maria - late 14th cent. brooch from Germany

Something a bit more secular this time - a luxury object of personal devotion.

In 1870 during some construction works at Pritzwalk (Germany) the large number of late medieval silver items had been discovered.
After the examination the researchers came to a conclusion that this treasure was probably hidden in 1392. It consisted 426 jewellery items and a number of jewellery fragments.
Unfortunately the treasure was moved from Pritzwalk to Berlin Decorative Art Museum and some of the items has been destroyed ( also including a beautiful wearable pendant altar with three kings visiting Christ) during the II World War bombing.

Hundreds of beautiful items survived, though and it was really hard to decide what to make first!
After hours of studying the catalogue- that was my pick.

The silver brooch in a shape of crowned letter M.

A wax model of a copy of the silver, late14th century brooch.


Letter M stands for Maria -Mother of Christ. 
The background of the letter is engraved with six four petal flowers and letters A and V- which stands for AVE.
There is also an additional element, a small leave-shaped pendant suspended with a silver wire eye soldered at the back. In the centre of the pendent the is an eye soldered with a silver foil hanging ornament ( very similar to the one from Erfurt Treasure hooks-and-eyes I made - you can see it here )
All elements are enemelled.
At the revers the hinged pin with a closing hook is still preserved.

The original brooch from Pritzwalk Treasure, now in Kunsgewerbetmuseum Collection in Berlin
Material: Silver, gold gilt, enamel
Dimensions: 50mm ( with pendant) x 2,1mm

Krabath, Stefan; Lambacher, Lothar: Der Pritzwalker Silberfund. Smuck des späten Mitelalters, Pritzwalk 2006

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