Art in Faith

Tuesday, 30 August 2011

Unknown Artist. Crucifijo de don Fernando el Magno y doña Sancha (Crucifix of King Fernando the Great and Queen Sancha). circa 1063





Crucifijo de don Fernando el Magno y doña Sancha (Crucifix of King Feranando the Great of Castilla y León and Queen Sancha)

Unknown Artist

circa 1063

Real Colegiata Basílica de San Isidoro de León

León (Province of León. Autonomous Community of Castilla y León)  SPAIN


This is one of the greatest surviving medieval Romanesque legacies, being equalled only by the roughly contemporaneous “King of the Confessorscrucifix, the Bury St Edmonds Cross of Master Hugo. Interestingly enough, both are ivory carvings, and both are similar in style, hinting that their creators trained under a New Roman master in a Constantinople atelier… not surprising, as “The City” was the centre of civilised life in Europe at the time (it was by no means a “Dark Age” as “Enlightenment” commentators called it). Just as people flock to New York today, and as they went to Paris in the Belle Epoque, they went to Constantinopolis the Golden in the tenth and eleventh centuries. Nea Romana was the beacon of sophistication, artistry, and literacy for nearly a millennium, and this cross (and the similar Bury St Edmonds cross) show the marks of that influence…


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