Due to the pandemic, we won't do much travelling this year. However, I did want to visit at least one museum new to me that has some medieval embroidery on display. As my husband cannot get time off work due to, you guessed it, the pandemic, we decided to visit the Germanisches Nationalmuseum in Nuremberg. It is huge, so we will need to return. This time we concentrated on the medieval embroidery on display. There's not much, but the pieces that are on display are rather magnificent!
What to think of this hairnet (Inv. Nr. GEW 2980) from the 13th-century? It was apparently found in the grave of a Hessian landgrave. Very fine filet embroidery on silk net.
Look at this reliquary pouch made in Trier around AD 993 (Inv. Nr. KG 562). It was my favourite piece on display. Extremely hard to photograph as it is placed on a glass plate above a mirror as the back looks very different. The pouch consists of silk fabric embroidered with metallic threads, metal shapes, glass, gemstones and silk threads. Unfortunately, it does not come across well in the pictures, but this piece has a real presence. It never ceases to amaze me how long ago these pieces were made and how well they have survived. It's like somebody blogging about St. Laurence in AD 3047 :).
This rather large piece of very fine silk embroidery on fine linen (Inv. Nr. GEW 2464) was probably used as an altar cloth or antependium. It shows Christ in the winepress and the Seat of Mercy. It was embroidered in a Nuremberg convent around AD 1370. Look how fine the split stitches are and the use of colour and shading is superb. You can even see the design drawing on the very fine linen.
This tiny medallion shows John the Baptist in very fine silk and pearl embroidery (Inv. Nr. GEW 2430a). It was made in the 13th or 14th-century in Byzantium.
That's enough eye-candy for now! I hope you enjoyed seeing some beautiful embroidery from so long ago. During August, I am taking a break from blogging. See you again in September with, hopefully, more details on the next online goldwork embroidery course!
Thank you so much for visiting the Museum on our behalf and taking so many interesting photos.
Thank you Nancy! It was a pleasure to visit Nuremberg :).
Auckje van der Leij
Fantastisch! Ook dat haarnetje! En dan ook nog geborduurd! Heel bijzonder!
Ja, dat had ik zo ook nog nooit gezien. Zo fijntjes en zo goed bewaard gebleven.
You make me laugh, Rachel. That's the same reaction I had to the hair net: 'I wonder if I can ...'
Thank you for showing these pictures and explanations! I probably won't ever get the chance to go there myself so seeing them here has been great! Enjoy your break :)
You are welcome Caitlin! And I will try to have a real break :).
Thank you. I really enjoyed seeing these.
Glad you liked them Sandra!
Claire de Pourtalès
Thank you for making the visit for us and sharing those fantastic pieces. I really wonder about the tools they used: lamps, mirrors to increase the light, fine needles, fine threads. We have machines now. But back then everything was handmade. Needles and threads too. When you see what masterpieces they could do with those tools, it is mind-blowing.
You are welcome, Claire! Like you, I am always in awe when seeing pieces like these.
Thank you Meri! You too.
Do you know Beth Lea from https://bethsbluebellwood.blogspot.com/ ?
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