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Hercules with the Cerynaean deer

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Venice (made)

  • Date:

    late 15th century to early 16th century (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Camelio Vittore Gambello, born 1460 - died 1537 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This plaquette depicting Hercules and the Cerynaecan deer is made by Camelio, also called Vittore Gambello. He was a Venetian sculptor, goldsmith, coin-engraver, founder and medallist (b. 1460; d. 1539). His career ranges from 1484 - 1523. The invention of cutting dies in steel is attributed to him. This technique allowed more minute work to be introduced into medals, marking a new era in medallic engraving.
Plaquettes are small plaques or reliefs made of bronze, brass, lead or precious metals. They originated in the 1440ies with the desire to reproduce coins and hardstone engravings from ancient Greece and Rome. Some were made as collector's pieces, to be viewed and displayed in private, and others for practical purposes. They also inspired designs in other media, from architecture to book-bindings.

Physical description

Double sided plaquette.
Obverse: Hercules in the foreground, naked, seen from the back, striding forward with the deer on his shoulders. To the right Pan seated with two smaller figures.
Reverse: Mercury, naked, sitting under a young tree. In front of him a caduceus rising from a trophy of arms, behind him a bird on the ground.

Place of Origin

Venice (made)


late 15th century to early 16th century (made)


Camelio Vittore Gambello, born 1460 - died 1537 (artist)

Materials and Techniques



Diameter: 3 cm

Object history note

From the Salting bequest.

Descriptive line

Plaquette, bronze, Hercules with the Cerynaean deer, by Camelio, Italy (Venice), late 15th to early 16th century

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

'Salting Bequest (A. 70 to A. 1029-1910) / Murray Bequest (A. 1030 to A. 1096-1910)'. In: List of Works of Art Acquired by the Victoria and Albert Museum (Department of Architecture and Sculpture). London: Printed under the Authority of his Majesty's Stationery Office, by Eyre and Spottiswoode, Limited, East Harding Street, EC, p. 76
Maclagan, Eric. Catalogue of Italian Plaquettes . London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1924, p. 58



Subjects depicted

Birds; Caduceus; Tree; Arms; Deer; Boys


Sculpture; Plaques & Plaquettes; Myths & Legends


Sculpture Collection

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