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Medal - Martin Luther

Martin Luther

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    Germany (possibly Saxony, made)

  • Date:

    1537 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Master of the Lindpaumer Medal (maker)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Brass. Copper 80.3%, zinc 8.6.5, tin 1.5%. Nickel, arsenic and lead also present.

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This is a brass medal made by the Master of the Lindpaumer Medal, probably in Saxony, and dated 1537. The obverse of this medal represents the half length portrait of Martin Luther, entirely surrounded by inscription within border.
Habich grouped together four medals which resemble each other stylistically and ascribed them to the Master of the Lindpaumer Medal. The inscriptions run horizontally across the obverses, and two show the figures' hands clasping a book. He suggested the sculptor Veit Arnberger of Innsbruck or the painter Georg Kolber of Schwaz could be identified with this Master.
It was bought from the Soulages collection. Jules Soulages (1812-1856) was a collector of French and Italian Renaissance art. After his death his collection was acquired by the Museum. Born in Toulouse in 1803, Jules Soulages practised as a lawyer in Paris and was founding member of the Société Archeologique du Midi de la France. He created an extensive collection of French and Italian Renaissance decorative art from 1825, comprising around 750 objects, including furniture, glass, ceramics, bronzes, enamels and ivories. In the late 1840s Soulages moved back to Toulouse, where Henry Cole viewed his collection in 1855. Subsequent sale negotiations led to the production of a catalogue and two exhibitions in England at the Museum of Ornamental Art at Marlborough House, and at the Manchester Art Treasures exhibition respectively, both enhancing the celebrity of the collection, and resulting in its acquisition for the South Kensington Museum. Soulages died on 13 October 1857, aged 54.

Place of Origin

Germany (possibly Saxony, made)


1537 (made)


Master of the Lindpaumer Medal (maker)

Materials and Techniques

Brass. Copper 80.3%, zinc 8.6.5, tin 1.5%. Nickel, arsenic and lead also present.


Diameter: 4.4 cm, Weight: 27 g

Object history note

Provenance: Soulanges. M. Jules Soulanges formed a large collection of decorative art mainly between 1830 and 1840. It was exhibited in Marlborough House, London, sponsored by a group of subscribers in 1856. Several objects were purchased by the then Department of Science and Art between 1859 and 1865.

There is an electrotype copy of this medal (inv. no. 1857-110). It was bought from the Soulages collection in 1865.

Descriptive line

Medal, brass, bust of Martin Luther, by the Master of the Lindpaumer medal, Germany, dated 1537

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

Trusted, Marjorie. German Renaissance Medals. Victoria & Albert Museum, 1990, p. 77
Inventory of Art Objects acquired in the Year 1865. Inventory of the Objects in the Art Division of the Museum at South Kensington, arranged According to the Dates of their Acquisition. Vol. 1. London : Printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode for H.M.S.O., 1868, p. 42
Robinson, John Charles. Catalogue of the Soulages Collection. London: Chapman & Hall, 1856, p. 156
Habich, Georg. ed. Die deutschen Schaumünzen des XVI. Jahrhunderts herausgegeben mit Unterstützung der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften und der Notgemeinschaft der deutschen Wissenschaft Auftrag des Deutschen Vereins für Kunstwissenschaft. München: Bruckmann, 1929-1934, I, I, p. 124, no. 846, pl. CV, 5




Coins & Medals; Portraits; Christianity; Religion


Sculpture Collection

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