Images of Medieval Art and Architecture
The Treasure of Saint Denis
Aquamanile and Basin
Adapted from Félibien, Plate II, Item P
Aquamanile and basin made of gilded silver. The aquamaile is remarkable.
On the bottom of the basis, there is a representation of Joseph bing sold
by his brothers. The figures are in half-relief, as are the six medallions
of Emperors which are around it.
Félibien, pages 539. Translated by Jane Vadnal.
- Félibien states that these objects were bought by the monks
- Sold in 1798.
- An aquamanile is a ewer or other water container used by a priest to
wash his hands during Mass.
- In the center of the basin was a representation of Joseph being sold
by his brothers, around the border were 6 medallions of Roman Emperors
in profile, surrounded with foliage motifs (Description of 1726, printed
- The foot of the aquamanile had antique medallions and floral moftis.
The rider, dressed in Roman armor. The water was poured in through a hole
in the rider, and came out through the horse's mouth.(Description of 1726,
printed in Mostesquiou-Fezensac)
Click here to
see other liturgical vessels in the Treasure of Saint-Denis.
Félibien, pages 539.
Louvre, no. 79, p. 338.
Montesquiou-Fezensac, II, pp. 514-6, III, p. 9.
Created by J Vadnal, July, 1998