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Prudence
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Prudence


Description Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description This winged figure holding the head of a serpent that curls round its chest probably represents the virtue Prudence, in accordance with Jesus' words: "be wise as serpents. . ." (Matthew 10:16). Along with the divine virtues of "faith, hope, and love" (1 Corinthians 13:13), justice, fortitude, temperance, and prudence were considered during the Middle Ages to be the principal worldly virtues. This statuette must have been part of a set placed at the base of a portable altar, candlestick, or baptismal font. It closely resembles in style the early 12th-century bronze doors of the Church of Saint Zeno in Verona.
Exhibitions
  • Realms of Faith: Medieval and Byzantine Art from the Walters Art Museum. Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville. 2001-2002.
  • Realms of Faith: Medieval and Byzantine Art from the Walters Art Museum. Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville. 2002-2005.
  • Things With Wings: Mythological Figures in Ancient Greek Art. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore. 2005-2006.
  • Realms of Faith: Medieval and Byzantine Art from the Walters Art Museum. Museum of Biblical Art, New York; Colby College Museum of Art, Waterville; Joslyn Art Museum, Omaha. 2008-2009.
  • Things With Wings: Mythological Figures in Ancient Greek Art. Ward Museum, Salisbury. 2009.
Provenance Arnold Seligmann, Rey & Co., New York [date of acquisition unknown], by purchase; Henry Walters, Baltimore, 1925, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters, 1925

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Creator
Period
ca. 1135 (Medieval)
Medium
bronze
(Metal)
Accession Number
54.52
Measurements
4 1/2 x 3 in. (11.4 x 7.6 cm)
Geographies
Location Within Museum
Not On View

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