THIS ITEM IS SOLD*** Antique 19th Century Convent Monastery Work Reliquary Agnus Dei

**This item has sold.** An exquisite hand painted Agnus Dei (a figure of a lamb bearing a cross or flag, as an emblem of Christ) is at the center of this hand made reliquary. The reliquary originates from a small French collection and dates from 1850-1860.

This type of reliquary was created within a convent or monastery using bits and pieces of cast off clothing (donated by local bourgeoisie) and old papers and books. So very individual, they reflect the devotion of the person who lovingly created them.

The example begins with a large rosette shape which is cut from hard paper board. The back is covered with green embossed paper of the period; the front with fine silk fabric with gilt metallic threads. The outer edge is adorned with fine scalloped gilt metallic braid. A central "box" has hard cardboard sides wrapped in 1/4" ribbon (very faded to a brown color). The interior is filled with tiny gilt edged paperolle flowers and accordion folds. Small pearl beads are placed throughout the design. The hand painted center is framed by a gilt edged paper board and tiny hand sewn paillettes (sequins). The entire design is sealed under a hand cut, very thick wafer of glass.

It measures: outer rosette, 4 3/4" in diameter, central reliquary box 3" in diameter, hand painted fabric medallion 1 1/2" in diameter; box is 1/2" thick. It is in very good antique condition: the fabrics and trim have darkened and worn with age. There is dust on the interior edge of the glass. There are the usual bends and irregular shapes typical with these delicate pieces. The painted figure is still retains the original hues and the design is still visible to the paperolle field.

It is one of the loveliest convent/monastery reliquaries that we have found to date. The depiction of the Agnus Dei is simple but powerful.

Related Items