Reliquary Bust of Saint Francis Borgia (1510-1572)

Artist/maker unknown, Spanish

Geography:
Made in Spain, Europe

Date:
c. 1624-50

Medium:
Wood with painted and gilded decoration (estofado)

Dimensions:
24 5/8 x 18 1/8 x 8 1/2 inches (62.6 x 46 x 21.6 cm)

Curatorial Department:
European Decorative Arts and Sculpture

Object Location:

* Gallery 253, European Art 1500-1850, second floor

Accession Number:
1993-22-1

Credit Line:
Purchased with the Fiske Kimball Fund, 1993

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Label:
Francis Borgia (Spanish, 1510-1572), great grandson of Pope Alexander VI and grandson of King Ferdinand of Aragon, became a monk in 1551 and rose to be the third head or general of the Jesuit order. The “B” on the base of the bust refers to the beatification of Borgia that took place in 1624. He was canonized as a saint in 1670. The central cavity--now empty--was originally intended to hold a relic.


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