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Seated Bishop




Seated Bishop


Mid-14th c.


Polychromed chestnut


162.7 x 65 x 47.3 cm


Purchase, Horsley and Annie Townsend Bequest, inv. 1973.Df.17


Western Art

Dressed in a white alb, a green dalmatic and a chasuble adorned with a large gold-colour cross, the bishop wears a white mitre that is also embellished with gold. He is sitting on a low stool and has both hands raised, the right in a gesture of benediction and the left closed to hold an attribute that is now lost. The drapery, consisting of spaced-out folds that are very deeply modelled on the torso and more softly between the legs, shows the late influence of Gothic sculpture of the second half of the thirteenth century which was no longer fashionable in Tuscany. That is precisely what makes this seated bishop giving a blessing unusual—it comes from a region, the Abruzzi, in central Italy, whose fourteenth-century art still remains, even today, less well known.

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