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Three crucifixes (two unfinished)

Key data

Basle(?) or Upper Rhine area, ca. 1500

Carved boxwood, partially painted, and carved limewood, heights 20, 18.1 and 18.2 cm

Inv. 1870.1185.

Inv. 1870.947.

Inv. 1870.948.


The three small crucifixes belonged to the collection of the Basle jurist Basilius Amerbach, who purchased them between 1578 and 1582. In their varying degrees of completion - also the main reason for the interest in them of the universal polymath Amerbach - they are unique illustrations of the working method of a carver of the Late Gothic period. It is uncertain whether they were left incomplete by chance, or even because they were rejects, or whether they were workshop models for the guidance of journeymen producing a larger number of replicas. The presence of these three crucifixes and two other small unfinished figures in the Amerbach Cabinet documents the change in connoisseurship during the Renaissance.

Selection of similar objects


Basel Historical Museum
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CH – 4001 Basel

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