This rare pair of silvered bishop busts dates to the 1600’s. They are from a church in Lazio, Italy, and based on their size, they were likely from a side altar. They are carved from wood, with a layer of gesso to bind the original silvering and paints. They have excellent proportion, and each bust has a slightly different facial characteristics. Each wears a tall mitre and shows traces of old incised patterns, colors of silver, gold, burgundy, white gesso, and blue backs. In the High Middle Ages, Bishops were so highly powerful and important figures. Every king was to have one Bishop in his court for consultation. Bishops were well educated, often studying for years in foreign universities. They were fluent in Latin and generally came from a noble or wealthy family.
Today, this wonderful pair of small parcel silvered busts will serve as unique decorative accessories.
CONDITION: Losses to motifs and finish as seen in photos.
H=20 5/8, W=9 1/4, D=5
Pair of Carved and Parcel Silvered 17th Century Bishops, Lazio Italy