Today, on Good Friday, I thought I’d share a highlight from the regalia or paraments of the Order of the Golden Fleece.
Can you imagine embroidering something like this? Or at least being a member of the company of artisans who embroidered it?
You can click on the photo for a much larger version, where you can see actual stitching details.
The embroidery on these paraments of the Order of the Golden Fleece is awe-inspiring. This Marian cope belongs to the collection. It’s one of my favorite pieces of ecclesiastical embroidery for the sake of study.
This is 15th century embroidery (1425 – 1440). Imagine: no daylight lamps, no magnification, no climate control… not even the easy-to-acquire needles that we’re used to today.
The whole panel in the center of this antependium illustrates the “Notgottes” or the “Distress of God.” Symbolically, it portrays the Holy Trinity after Christ is removed from the Cross – God the Father holding His crucified Son, with the Holy Spirit symbolized by the dove on Christ’s shoulder.
The antependium is embroidered on a linen ground fabric in silk and goldwork embroidery, with pearls and gemstones. Velvet is also listed as part of the ground.
It’s pretty incredible to think that, 900 years later, these pieces still exist and are available for us to view and to wonder about.
On that note, I’d like to wish you and yours a Happy Easter this Sunday!
I’ll be taking a short break for Easter. Even though I’ll be stitching the whole time (speaking of ecclesiastical embroidery, the deadline is fast approaching for this piece), I won’t be blogging again until next Wednesday, and all other studio functions, including shipping, will also be on hold. Any orders placed today through next Tuesday will ship Wednesday.
Have a beautiful weekend! See you next week!