V&A Search the Collections

Pendant

  • Place of origin:

    Loreto (probably, made)

  • Date:

    1800-1890 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Unknown

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Silver filigree with a cast silver medallion

  • Museum number:

    327-1890

  • Gallery location:

    Jewellery, Rooms 91 to 93 mezzanine, The William and Judith Bollinger Gallery, case 72, shelf C, box 2

  • Public access description

    After the prolonged and destructive Thirty Years War of 1618–48, Europe split into a Catholic south and a Protestant north. This led to an increase in the number of pilgrimage sites in the Catholic area, and a massive expansion in the production of religious medals, crosses and souvenir jewellery, often in a form that was specific to a particular holy site. Worshippers believed that images of saints or the Virgin and Child could work miracles and offer protection against illness or the dangers of travel. Women in Catholic countries commonly wore crosses and other religious objects as jewellery with their traditional dress.

    The medallion in this pendant is stamped with the image of the Virgin of Loreto on one side, and St Anthony of Padua on the other. Loreto and Padua were two of the most important pilgrimage sites in north-east Italy, and attracted pilgrims from Austria and southern Germany as well as the local region. It is mounted in filigree, which was a speciality of Italy in the 19th century.

  • Physical description

    Filigree pendant, with a medallion set in the centre with the Virgin of Loreto on one side, and St. Anthony of Padua on the other.

  • Dimensions

    Height: 5.4 cm, Width: 4.3 cm, Depth: 0.6 cm

  • Descriptive line

    Silver filigree pendant with a medallion of the Virgin of Loreto (Italy), 1800-1890.

  • Collection code

    Metalwork Collection