Desiderius Erasmus thumbnail 1
Desiderius Erasmus thumbnail 2
Image of Gallery in South Kensington
On display at V&A South Kensington
Medieval & Renaissance, Room 64, The Wolfson Gallery

Desiderius Erasmus

Medal
1519 (dated)
Artist/Maker
Place Of Origin

Erasmus (about 1469–1536) was the leading scholar of the northern Renaissance. He wrote on aspects of religion, philosophy and education, and was the first editor of the New Testament. This medal was commissioned by Erasmus himself from an artist who was primarily a painter.


object details
Categories
Object Type
Materials and Techniques
Bronze, cast
Brief Description
Bronze medal, with bust of Erasmus and a bust of the god Terminus, by Quentin Matsys, dated 1519, Flemish, 16th century
Physical Description
Bronze medal, on the obverse; a bust of Erasmus facing to the left, on the reverse a bust of the god Terminus on a plinth set upon ground. The medal is dated and inscribed in Greek and Latin
Dimensions
  • Diameter: 10.7cm
  • Depth: 1.3cm
Measured for the Medieval and Renaissance Galleries
Marks and Inscriptions
  • 'IMAGO AD VIVA EFFIGE EXPRESSA' and in the field 'ER. ROT.' (Obverse; inscription partly in Greek, partly in Latin)
  • 'CONCEDO NULLI' and 'MORS ULTIMA LINEA REV.' (Reverse; inscription partly in Greek, partly in Latin)
Historical context
Other versions of this medal can be found in the British Museum, the National Gallery of Art, Washington (Inv. No. 1957.14.1264), and the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge
Subjects depicted
Summary
Erasmus (about 1469–1536) was the leading scholar of the northern Renaissance. He wrote on aspects of religion, philosophy and education, and was the first editor of the New Testament. This medal was commissioned by Erasmus himself from an artist who was primarily a painter.
Bibliographic References
  • Scher, Stephen K, The Currency of fame: portrait medals of the Renaissance, New York, National Gallery of Art (U.S.), Frick Collection., 1994pp.349-350
  • Inventory of Art Objects Acquired in the Year 1858. In: Inventory of the Objects in the Art Division of the Museum at South Kensington, Arranged According to the Dates of their Acquisition. Vol I. London: Printed by George E. Eyre and William Spottiswoode for H.M.S.O., 1868, p. 17.
  • Trusted, Marjorie, ed. The Making of Sculpture. The Materials and Techniques of European Sculpture. London: 2007, p. 83, pl. 131.
  • Reid, Barbara, Leslie Rivett and Margarette Lincoln, Henry VIII at Greenwich, London: National Maritime Museum, 1991.
  • Trapp, J.B. and Herbrüggen, Hubertus Schulte, The King's good servant: Sir Thomas More, 1477/8-1535, London, National Portrait Gallery, 1977
Collection
Accession Number
4613-1858

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record createdAugust 26, 2004
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