Cranach - St Erasmus
St Erasmus
Lucas Cranach the Elder (workshop)
Grunewald hunting lodge
23.05.2019 - 02:59
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CDA ID / Inventory NumberDE_SPSG_GKI9369
Persistent Link
FR (1978) No.FR-none
St Erasmus[CDA 2012]
Lucas Cranach the Elder (workshop)[Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 208-209, No. IV.4]
about 1525[Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 208-209, No. IV.4]
Owner / Repository / Location:
OwnerHohenzoller dynasty, Georg Friedrich Prince of Prussia
RepositoryGrunewald hunting lodge
Dimensions of support: 29 x 10.4 cm [Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 208-209, No. IV.4]
Painting on lime wood (Tilia sp.) [Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 208-209, No. IV.4]
Signature / Date:
Inscriptions, Marks, Labels, Seals:
In the nimbus: 'S ERRASMVS' [CDA 2012]
The small panel depicts St Erasmus with Cardinal Albrecht of Brandenburg's features. He is dressed in a sumptuous pontifical robe decorated with pearls and precious stones, which bears Albrecht's coat-of-arms, with the coats-of-arms of the dioceses of Mainz, Magdeburg and Halberstadt at the bottom. He stands in front of a green velvet curtain held by angels. He holds a crosier in his right hand, and in his left hand he holds the wooden winch with which his intestines were pulled from his body as a reference to his martyrdom. [see Elke A. Werner, Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 208-209, No. IV.4]
- 1902 acquired from a private collection
[Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 208-209, No. IV.4]
Berlin 2009/10, Cat. No. IV.4
Sources / Publications:
Reference on PageCatalogue NumberFigure/Plate
Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009 A208-209No. IV.4Fig. IV.4a
Merkel 2007 A80Fig. 3
Exhib. Cat. Halle 2006190, 194No. 93
Exhib. Cat. Mainz 1990No. 81
Börsch-Supan 196448No. 51
Interpretation / History / Discussion:
‚Cardinal Albrecht had himself repeatedly portrayed as the figure of St Erasmus the patron saint of the Brandenburg branch of the Hohenzoller family. For example the Erasmus-Maurice-panel (Munich, Alte Pinakothek) created by Grünewald for the collegial church in Halle (Hallenser Stiftskirche) about 1520-1524. […]
Likewise the pendant picture depicting St Ursula could be a role portrait. The letters O.M.V.I.A on Ursula’s neckband, referring to ‘Omnia vincit amor’ (Love vanquishes all) in Virgil’s 10 Eclogue, support the thesis, that it could be a crypto-portrait of a concubine (Leys Schütz?). Erotic connotations are also suggested by the direct eye contact between the two figures and the alignment of the arrow, which like Cupid’s arrow is pointing at Erasmus/Albrecht. […]
The present presentation of both panels as a diptych is probably not authentic. Originally they would have been wing panels of an altarpiece of which the central panel is now lost.’
[Elke A. Werner, Exhib. Cat. Berlin 2009, 208-209, No. IV.4]