• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 12137

    Illuminated Manuscripts from the Collection of Maurice Burrus (1882-1959)

    25 May 2016, London, King Street

  • Lot 3

    A LIMOGES GILT COPPER AND ENAMEL BOOK COVER, depicting the Crucifixion [Limoges, c.1200]

    Price Realised  

    Estimate

    A LIMOGES GILT COPPER AND ENAMEL BOOK COVER, depicting the Crucifixion [Limoges, c.1200]

    This book cover, depicting Christ on the cross with the Virgin on his right and John the Evangelist on his left, is an important and rare example of the work of the early Limoges enamellers.

    Limoges enamel bookcovers of the late 12th and early 13th century, intended for liturgical use, followed a conventional pattern. The front, as in the present case, would have an image of the Crucifixion, while the back would depict Christ in Majesty.

    PROVENANCE:
    (1) The plaque can be stylistically linked to a small group of book covers produced in Limoges c.1200, including one at the Musée-Château de Villevêque (E. Antoine, D. Gaborit-Chopin, M.-M. Gauthier, Corpus des Emaux méridionaux, II, L'Apogée, 1190-1215, Paris, 2011, VB, no 37, pp.222-23 and VC, no 3) and, in particular, another at the Metropolitan Museum of Art (Acc. no 17.190.785; see also A. Pératé, Collections Georges Hoentschel: Émaux du XIIe au XVe siècle, Paris, 1911, no 53, fig. XXX). (2) SIMON GOLDSCHMIDT (d. 1924); sale at Drouot, Paris, 27 May 1937, lot 50. (3) MAURICE BURRUS.

    BIBLIOGRAPHY:
    M.-M. Gauthier, Emaux Méridionaux - Catalogue international de l'Oeuvre de Limoges, I, l'Epoque Romane, Paris, 1987, cats. 162-165, pp. 155-157, pls. CLVI-CLVII, figs. 553-554.

    M.-M. Gauthier and G. François, Medieval Enamels - Masterpieces from the Kier Collection, London, 1981, p. 15, no 6, pl. 6.

    Paris, New York, Musée du Louvre, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, L'oeuvre de Limoges, Emaux limousins du Moyen-Age, 23 Oct. 1995 - 22 Jan. 1996 and 4 March - 16 June 1996, B. Drake Boehm and E. Taburet-Delahaye, p. 280, no 88.

    M.-A. Carlier, Art médieval: exposition à l'occasion du centenaire de Brimo de Laroussilhe, Paris, 2008, ill. 10, pp. 49-52.


    PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION AND CONDITION:
    240 x 120 mm. Christ on the cross with the Virgin and John the Evangelist and two angels between the hand of God above; Adam resurrected below (light wear and some loss of gilding).


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    Contact the department

    Special Notice

    These lots have been imported from outside the EU for sale using a Temporary Import regime. Import VAT is payable (at 5%) on the Hammer price. VAT is also payable (at 20%) on the buyer’s Premium on a VAT inclusive basis. This VAT is not shown separately on the invoice. When a buyer of such a lot has registered an EU address but wishes to export the lot or complete the import into another EU country, he must advise Christie's immediately after the auction.