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The Flagellation of the Persian Martyrs

  • Object:

    Plaster cast

  • Place of origin:

    Lombardy (sculpted)
    Milan (city) (cast)

  • Date:

    1479-1482 (sculpted)
    ca. 1884 (cast)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Amadeo, Giovanni Antonio (sculptor)
    Pierotti, Pietro Signor (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Plaster cast

  • Museum number:

    REPRO.1884-646

  • Gallery location:

    Cast Courts, Room 46b, The Weston Cast Court , case WS

These are plaster casts of marble reliefs by Amadeo, depicting the martyrdom of St Marius and St Martha, and their sons Audifax and Abrachum. Here the two sons are being flogged. These reliefs, together with a scene on the wall opposite (The Bodies of the Martyrs are Burned 1884-651), are from a series of eight depicting the martyrdom of these Christians from Persia, who were executed in Rome under Emperor Claudius II in the 3rd century CE. They originally adorned a shrine containing relics of these martyrs in the church of San Lorenzo in Cremona. The shrine was commissioned by the abbot, Antonio de' Meli, before his death in 1479, and was completed by 1482. They were later incorporated into pulpits in Cremona Cathedral, where they remain today. The plaster casts were made by an Italian firm based in Milan.

Physical description

Plaster cast of a marble relief by Giovanni Antonio Amadeo depicting the Flagellation of the Persian Martyrs, Saints Marius and Martha and their sons Audifax and Abrachum

Place of Origin

Lombardy (sculpted)
Milan (city) (cast)

Date

1479-1482 (sculpted)
ca. 1884 (cast)

Artist/maker

Amadeo, Giovanni Antonio (sculptor)
Pierotti, Pietro Signor (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Plaster cast

Dimensions

Height: 66.5 cm, Width: 64 cm

Object history note

Purchased from Signor Pierotti in 1884 for £8 12s 6d (240 lire) together with museum nos. 1884-645 and 647 to 651

Historical context note

This is one of six reliefs (museum nos. 1884-645 to 650) together with a scene depicting The Bodies of the Martyrs are Burned (museum no. 1884-651) that are from a series of eight scenes depicting the martyrdom of Saints Marius and Martha and of their sons Audifax and Abrachum: Christians from Persia who were executed in Rome under Claudius II in the third century A.D. The scenes originally adorned a shrine containing relics of these martyrs in the church of San Lorenzo in Cremona. The shrine was commissioned by the Abbot, Antonio de' Meli before his death in 1479, and was completed by 1482. With the suppression of San Lorenzo in the early 19th century, the shrine was sold off, and, between 1805 and 1820, the eight reliefs of martyrdom were incorporated into pulpits in Cremona Cathedral, where they remain today. Two roundels from the shrine of the Persian Martyrs also survive:
1.The Nativity, bearing the inscription "CORP.S.M.MARII ET MARTHAE" in the Museo Archeologico, in Milan.
2.The Annunciation, bearing the inscription "ANTO. DE MEL JS. I.V.DOCT.ABB.F" in the Musée du Louvre, Paris.

Descriptive line

Plaster cast after a scene from the lives of the Persian Martyrs, The Flagellation of the Persian Martyrs, by Giovanni Antonio Amadeo, Lombardy, cast by Signor Pierotti, Milan, about 1884

Subjects depicted

Martyrdom

Categories

Ph_survey; Sculpture; Christianity

Collection

Sculpture Collection

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