A & A spacer courtauld institute of art
quick search advanced search browse temp folder

Complete rosary of 5 beads, with crucifix pendant (chapelet)

Complete rosary of 5 beads, with crucifix pendant (chapelet)
enlarge image zoom image

Secular. Religious. Memento Mori.

Repository Institution

To purchase an image

Cologne, Museum Schnütgen

Inv. B 161


Height: 59 mm (crucifix pendant)
Width: 38 mm (crucifix pendant)
Length: 615 mm (length of the chain)

Bead 1
Side 1: Holy Face of Christ (Sancta Facies).
Side 2: head of the Virgin.
Bead 2
Side 1: head of Christ with the crown of thorns.
Side 2: skull (death).
Bead 3
Side 1: bust of a young woman.
Side 2: bust of a woman.
Side 3: bust of an elderly woman.
Side 4: skull (Death); worms.
Bead 4
Side 1: head of Christ with the crown of thorns.
Side 2: head of a veiled woman (Virgin?).
Side 3: skull (Death); worms; toad; rat.
Bead 5
Side 1: crowned head of a king. Inscription: 'MEMENTO FINIS'.
Side 2: skull (Death); worms. Illegible inscription.
Crucifix pendant:
Horizontal arm of the cross: Annunciation; Visitation; Nativity.
Vertical arm of the cross: Deposition.

Cologne 2006: end of the 15th century - middle of the 17th century (the metal chain, metal beads and crucifix pendant are 17th century: the 15th century rosary beads may have been assembled at this date).


Carved in the round.

Object Condition
Very worn.

Collection of Peter and Irene Ludwig, Aachen; on permanent loan to the Museum from 1963 to 2011; donated to the museum in 2011.

U. Bock, Memento Mori, Schnütgen-Museum: Wege durch die Sammlung 3 (Cologne, year unknown).
G. M. Ritz, Der Rosenkranz (Munich, 1963).
500 Jahre Rosenkranz, 1475 Köln 1975, exhibition catalogue, Cologne, Erzbischöfliches Diözesan-Museum, 25 October 1975-15 January 1976.
R. Dieckhoff, 'Klappernd Gebein und nagend Gewürm: Memento mori im Schnütgen-Museum', in Kleine Festschrift zum dreifachen Jubiläum, exhibition catalogue, Cologne, Schnütgen-Museum, 1981, pp. 39-46.
Ludwigs Lust: die Sammlung Irene und Peter Ludwig, dir. by M. Eissenhauer, exhibition catalogue, Nuremberg, Germanisches Nationalmuseum, 19 June-10 October 1993, no. 110.
Der Rosenkranz. Andacht, Geschichte, Kunst, ed. by U.-B. Frei, F. Bühler (Bern, 2003).
Zum Sterben schön! Alter, Totentanz und Sterbekunst von 1500 bis heute, ed. by A. von Hülsen-Esch and H. Westermann-Angerhausen, Cologne, Schnütgen Museum 2006, no. 41.


Boîte ornée de scènes profanes France, début du XIIIe siècle Londres, British Museum, Inv. 1856,0509.2 © Bildarchiv Foto Marburg.

All images on this website are made available exclusively for scholarly and educational purposes and may not be used commercially.

spacer spacer spacer spacer
Please remember to acknowledge any use of the site in publications and lectures as: 'Gothic Ivories Project at The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, www.gothicivories.courtauld.ac.uk', followed by the date you accessed the site.