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.
- Reliquary Cross with the Arms of the Veltheim Family
- Silver gilt, enamel, and gemstones
- 20.5 × 12.8 cm (8 1/16 × 5 1/16 in.)
- Gift of Mrs. Chauncey McCormick