Description The volute (spiral head) of this crozier resembles a dragon. With a long curving neck covered with blue enamel scales, its grinning head bites at a leafy branch. Inside are the Virgin Mary and the Archangel Gabriel in a scene of the Annunciation. Gabriel's abbreviated greeting "Hail Mary, full of Grace" (Luke 1:28) appears in white enameled letters on each side of the volute. On one side the greeting is misspelled. In Christian symbolism, the dragon represented the Devil who misled mankind, while the Annunciation initiated Christ's birth and human redemption.
- Burlington Club, London, 1897. Burlington Fine Arts Club, London. 1897.
Provenance Charles Borradaile, Brighton, England, 1895, by purchase; Marcello Galli-Dunn, Castello di Badia, Poggibonsi, Tuscany, by purchase; Sale, Galleria Sangiorgi, Rome, May 1, 1905, no. 338, pl. 33; Henry Walters, Baltimore, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Inscriptions On obverse side of crozier volute in enamel text: AVE MARIA GRA PLE; [Transcription] AVE MARIA GRA[TIA] PLE[NA]; [Translation] Hail Mary, full of grace. On reverse side of crozier volute in enamel text: AVE MARIA GRA PIEM;[Transcription] AVE MARIA GRA[TIA] PIEM; [Translation] Hail Mary, full of grace. The word PLENA (full) is misspelled as PIEM in this inscription.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters
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