Francesco Vanni, Reliquary of Saint Reparata

Francesco Vanni - Tuscan goldsmith
1375, 1605
Original location
Cathedral, treasure
Silver, gold, enamels
Embossing, chiselling, engraving, gilding, painting
Height: 61 cm; Width: 21,5 cm; Depth: 23 cm;
Silver, gold, enamels

The current form of this reliquary, which preserves a rib of St Reparata, is due to artisans working in two phases. The inscription under the node of the stem relates to Francesco Vanni, a master artisan active between 1366 and 1390. From this, we know that he created the oldest parts, which are the foot and stem with median node, elegantly decorated with figures of musician angels, Saints, the Crucifixion, the Virgin and St. John the Evangelist, the Tetramorph, the Calvary and the Agnus Dei. The enameling for these figures is largely lost. The hexagonal spire with small mullioned windows above the reliquary, in turn surmounted by a cross, also dates to the 1300s.

In 1605, Cosimo dei Conti della Gherardesca, Florentine archpriest, took the reliquary from the Cathedral of Colle di Val d'Elsa, where he was bishop, and donated it to the Cathedral of Florence. Between 1615 and 1633, the reliquary was then modernized. This was the moment when the glass case was added, with its base and decoration of cherubs.

In 1605 Cosimo dei Conti della Gherardesca, Florentine archpriest, donated the reliquary to the Cathedral of Florence, taking it from the Cathedral of Colle Val D 'elsa, where he was bishop. Between 1615 and 1633 the reliquary was then modernized and was added the glass case, with the base decorated with Cherubini.

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Cappella delle Reliquie