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Front panel (fragment of a casket; coffret) (Front)

Front panel (fragment of a casket; coffret) (Front)
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Secular. Courtly love. Games.

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Princeton, Princeton University Art Museum



Height: 105mm
Width: 250mm
Depth: 40mm

Zone 1, register 1: Courting couples (meeting of lovers); lady chucking her lover under the chin; youth with a hawk on his wrist; couple in a tree.
Zone 1, register 2: Youth holding a squirrel; offering of a flower; lady with a hawk on her wrist.
Zone 2, register 1: Offering of the heart.
Zone 2, register 2: game of hot cockles (jeu de haute coquille).
Zone 3, register 1: offering of a bauble; lady making a chaplet.
Zone 3, register 2: game of frog in the middle (jeu de la grenouille).
Zone 4: winged God of Love in a tree throwing arrows at lovers; God of Love with a hawk on his wrist; man and woman kneeling in prayer in the tree.

Randall 1997: French, 1340-1360.


Object Condition
Missing: silver mounts. Recessed borders for mounts.

The front, back and (Bern) side panels were kept together until the 19th century when they were assembled into a box with an added 19th-century ivory lid with a jousting scene and added side. It was sold in 1977 to a Texas collector who took it apart and sold the genuine parts. The front is now in the Princeton University Art Museum (1996-153), the back and side with the sword bridge scene are in private collections. The missing side, which must have been separated from the others at an early stage was acquired in 2009 by the Princeton University Art Museum (2009-23).

Sotheby's, London, 15 December 1977, lot 27 (sold together with the back and sword bridge sides, included in a recomposed casket): private collection, Texas (the casket was taken apart at this time). Sotheby's, New York, 14 June 1996, lot 63: bought in; privately sold, 21 August 1996: bought thanks to the John Maclean Magie, Class of 1892, and Gertrude Magie Fund in 1996.

R. H. Randall Jr., 'Games on a Medieval Ivory', in Record of the Art Museum, Princeton University, 56 (1997), pp. 3-9, fig. 1.


© Princeton University Art Museum. Museum purchase, John Maclean Magie, Class of 1892, and Gertrude Magie. Photography: Bruce M. White.

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