Samite fragments with double-headed eagles, from the tomb of Saint Bernard Calvo

Samite fragments with double-headed eagles, from the tomb of Saint Bernard Calvo

1200-1243

Samite: silk

Overall: 118 x 165 cm (46 7/16 x 64 15/16 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund 1951.92

Description

This silk is woven with horizontal rows of incompleted ovals, each containing a double-headed eagle grasping lions with its talons. It belongs to a group of Spanish silks that emulated the great silks being produced at that time in Byzantium. During the 11th and 12th centuries, Spanish weavers not only drew freely upon Byzantine and Near Eastern models for their designs, but at times went so far as to create outright forgeries. This is one of several textiles found in the tomb of St. Bernard Calvo, Bishop of Vich in Spain, who died in 1243.

See also
Collection: 
T - Islamic
Department: 
Textiles
Type of artwork: 
Textile
Medium: 
Samite: silk

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