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Christ Blessing

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Istanbul (made)

  • Date:

    886-912 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:


  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Medieval & Renaissance, Room 8, The William and Eileen Ruddock Gallery, case 8

Byzantine cameos were made in good numbers between the 10th and 12th centuries in a variety of semi-precious stones. Many showed standard images of Christ or the Virgin, familiar from coins and other media, or depicted particularly popular saints. They were often set into pendants or other items of jewellery, and being easily portable several came to be inserted into western book covers and reliquaries.

Physical description

Cameo pendant, jasper, of Christ blessing. On the reverse is an inscription referring to the Emperor Leo VI (886-912).

Place of Origin

Istanbul (made)


886-912 (made)



Materials and Techniques



Height: 6.4 cm, Width: 3.3 cm, Depth: 0.6 cm

Descriptive line

Cameo pendant, jasper, of Christ blessing, an inscription referring to Emperor Leo VI is on the reverse, Byzantine (Constantinople), late 9th or early 10th century

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

P. Williamson (ed.), European Sculpture at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, 1996, p. 38
Kornblatt, G. 'Ein Karolingischer Kameo am Dreikönigensehrein im Kölner Dom'. Kölner Domblatt. XXVI. 1997. pp.134-37. fig. 26, 29.
Popovich, Ljnbiea D. 'Byzantine Cameos with Arched Tops: a Question of Purpose' in Abstracts of the First Annual Byzantine Studies Conference. Cleveland. 24-25 October 175, 43-44.
Verdier, P. 'Dominus Potens in Praelio' Wallraf- Richartz Jahrbuch XLIII. 1982. p.76.
Williamson, Paul. The Medieval Treasury. London. Victoria and Albert Museum. 1986. pp.86-7.
Evans, Helen C & Wixom, William D (ed.), The Glory of Byzantium; art and culture of the Middle Byzantine era A.D. 843-1261, Metropolitan Museum, New York, 1997



Subjects depicted



Sculpture; Personal accessories; Jewellery; Religion; Christianity


Sculpture Collection

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