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Reliquary Cross with the Arms of the Veltheim Family

A work made of silver gilt, enamel, and gemstones.
CC0 Public Domain Designation

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  • A work made of silver gilt, enamel, and gemstones.


c. 1300


German; Brunswick (Braunschweig)

About this artwork

This altar cross, richly ornamented with colorful precious and semi-precious stones of amethyst, carnelian, chalcedony, labradorite, blue sapphire, and topaz, was part of the Guelph treasure maintained in the collegiate church of Saint Blaise, Braunschweig, under the patronage of the dukes of Braunschweig-Lüneberg. It was made, not for the ducal family, but for another noble family of Lower Saxony, the Veltheims, whose coat of arms executed in enamel decorates the base of the cross. The cross also served as a reliquary, since it contains the relics of several saints. It may have commissioned to celebrate the founding of the Convent of Saint Anna in Braunschweig by the Veltheim family in 1326; how it entered the group of treasury objects kept together in the church of Saint Blaise is unclear.


On View, Gallery 236


Applied Arts of Europe


Reliquary Cross with the Arms of the Veltheim Family


Brunswick (Object found in)

Date  Dates are not always precisely known, but the Art Institute strives to present this information as consistently and legibly as possible. Dates may be represented as a range that spans decades, centuries, dynasties, or periods and may include qualifiers such as c. (circa) or BCE.



Silver gilt, enamel, and gemstones


20.5 × 12.8 cm (8 1/16 × 5 1/16 in.)

Credit Line

Gift of Mrs. Chauncey McCormick

Reference Number


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Extended information about this artwork

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