Secular seal

English
Medieval (Gothic)
late 13th–14th century


Object Place: Europe, England

Dimensions

2.1 x 1.5 x 2.3 cm (13/16 x 9/16 x 7/8 in.)

Accession Number

63.1078

Medium or Technique

Silver (93.6% silver, 4.3% copper, 1.3% gold, .8% lead)

Not On View

Collections

Europe

Classifications

Metalwork

Elliptical die on the base of a hexagonal bell-shape matrix with knop at the end, to which is soldered a pierced oval disk for attachment to a chain (for example, see Spencer 1984, p. 380, no. 21; London 1987, pp. 398-399, no. 458). Solid cast, chased, punched and soldered. The intaglio design against a ground marked with small crosses shows a frontal standing woman wearing a close-fitting gown and gorget and veil on her head. In one hand she holds a small animal (probably a dog) in front of her chest. Extended to the side, her other arm holds by a thin strap a shield showing a chevron chequey among three boars heads, couped and tusked. Above the shield is a helmet with plume and mantling. Alternating water bougets and six-pointed mullets make up the border. Five punched dots arranged in a quincunx at the base of the handle indicate the top of the matrix.

Provenance

1963, Claude Blair, London; 1963, sold by Blair to the MFA for $500. (Accession Date: September 18, 1963)

Credit Line

Theodora Wilbour Fund in memory of Charlotte Beebe Wilbour