Chest of Beatitudes

The ark or chest of the Beatitudes was a XI century Romanesque ivory plaques made with, que fue un regalo que los reyes leoneses Fernando I y su esposa doña Sancha hicieron a la Colegiata de San Isidoro de León en el año 1063. It was made in the eboraria workshop located in the city of León, very close to said collegiate church., linked to royalty, in great demand and fame especially during the eleventh century. Is believed to be aimed at shrine as the Ark of Ivories. Ivory plates are guarded in the National Archaeological Museum (Spain).

This box prismatic and pyramidal cover is known by this name because the seven ivory plaques that line its wooden structure representing this topic, played in a style typical of early Romanesque art. Each of the beatitudes is written on the arches that frame the repeated scene of an angel blessing a character, probable allegory each. Taifa period plates that cover the back were added in the early nineteenth century. He remained in the Collegiate from the date of your donation (1063) to entry in the National Archaeological Museum, in 1871, along with other pieces of treasure. During the French invasion was stolen plate missing and perhaps other complete different issue would complete the set. Later, the casket was reconstituted with the addition of the Andalusian ivories, that should belong to other parts of one's collegiate, perhaps in disrepair.

Lining is lost, and reverse platelets, replaced by several ivory plaques Caliphate bypass. The stripping of the gold hardware was accomplished by French troops in 1808.

The fourth external face presents a disjointed set of seven pieces carved with motifs epigraphic: “Ismail son of Al-Mamun and his own famous doubly doubly happy” fitomorfos zoomorfos and Islamic affiliation, who have come to be dated between 1043 and 1077 (On. Galán Galindo, Islam Medieval Ivories, Cordova, 2005, II, pp. 81-85).

It is curious and interesting as significant concentration from Islamic parts of the Caliphate of Córdoba, the Collegiate Church of San Isidoro de Leon brings. Recently it has been confirmed that rooster weathervane famous tower of the Collegiate, metal is almost certainly from Medina Azahara.


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  1. It is curious. The two epigraphic friezes in highly stylized Kufic are placed upside down, sign that whoever put together after shredding had no idea of ​​Arab. Or for another reason a little more incisive.

  2. I believe that when the chest patched with these remains from other, Ivory only seeking to cover its surface. I also had the intention that the borders border the perimeter of the rectangle. So I think they turned them, epigraphy little interest them.
    Is it may certify any form or by any indication that it comes from Cordoba? plants seem to Medina Azahara workshops.

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