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Shaft of a Bishop's crozier

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Colmar (engraved)

  • Date:

    ca 1470 (engraved)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Schongauer, Martin (engraver)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Engraving on laid paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case EO, shelf 115

This engraving depicts the top portion of a bishop's crozier - the ceremonial staff based on a shepherd's crook that is carried in procession by bishops and archbishops.

Martin Schongauer, son of a goldsmith, was among the first European artists to explore the full expressive potential of printmaking. Schongauer's novel use of the technique of engraving, developed from the goldsmith's long-established practice of decorating metal with engraved patterns, was recognized almost immediately and his prints were highly esteemed in his own lifetime. In this print Schongauer has shown a clear understanding for the artisan's creation and his knowledge of the best of the goldsmiths' craft.

Physical description

The lower part of the engraving depicts a polygonal shaft of the crozier rising through an architectural section fitted with niches with small figures beneath Gothic arches with finials, showing St Margaret, a king with a sceptre and orb and St Barbara, standing on consoles.

Place of Origin

Colmar (engraved)


ca 1470 (engraved)


Schongauer, Martin (engraver)

Materials and Techniques

Engraving on laid paper


Height: 57 mm

Descriptive line

Engraving of a Bishop's crozier

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Lambert, Susan (ed.) Pattern & Design: Designs for the Decorative Arts 1480-1980 London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1983

Subjects depicted



Prints; Christianity; Ornament prints


Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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