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medal

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    G3,IP.940

  • Description

    Bronze medal.

  • Date

    • 17thC - 18thC
  • Production place

  • Materials

  • Dimensions

    • Weight: 126.45 grammes
    • Diameter: 69 millimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Position

        reverse
      • Inscription Language

        Latin
      • Inscription Content

        TIMVIT QVO SOSPITE VINCI
      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Position

        obverse
      • Inscription Language

        Latin
      • Inscription Content

        RAPHAEL SANCTIVS VRBINAS
  • Curator's comments

    Tamara Smithers
    Temple University, Philadelphia
    (27/07/2011):

    The obverse of the medal illustrates a typical likeness of Raphael Sanzio of Urbino, wearing a cap over wavy, shoulder-length hair. He is further identified by an inscription “RAPHAEL SANCTIVS VRBINAS.” The reverse features an image of Diana Polymastes, the Roman goddess of Nature (specifically hunting, wild animals, and childbirth), who is the equivalent of the Greek deity Artemis of Ephesus. The figure, based on her cult statue, is frontal and archaizing. She is shown in typical fashion: with a headdress, bound feet, and many breasts, and in this case feeds two deer, who often accompany her. The Latin inscription on the medal quotes part of Pietro Bembo’s epigram for the artist who died April 6, 1520. The famous distich “ILLE HIC EST RAPHAEL, TIMVIT QVO SOSPITE VINCI RERVM MAGNA PARENS, ET MORIENTE MORI” boasts that while Raphael was alive, Nature feared he would outdo her, and upon his death, she herself would die. Bembo’s full epigraph is inscribed on Raphael’s memorial in the Pantheon in Rome, and reads:
    D.O.M.
    RAPHAELLI. SANCTIO. IOANN. F. VRBINATI.
    PICTORI. EMINENTISS. VETERVMQ. AEMVLO
    CVIVS. SPRIRANTEIS PROPE. IMAGINIS. SI.
    CONTEMPLERE. NATVRAE. ATQVE. ARTIS. FOEDVS
    FACILE. INSPEXERIS
    IVLII II. ET. LEONIS. X. PONTT. MAXX. PICTVRAE
    ET. ARCHITECT. OPERIBVS. GLORIAM AVXIT.
    VA. XXXVII INTEGER. INTEGROS
    QVO. DIE. NATVS EST. EO ESSE DE SIIT
    VIII. ID APRIL. MDXX.

    ILLE. HIC. EST. RAPHAEL. TIMVIT. QVO SOSPITE. VINCI
    RERVM MAGNA PARENS ET MORIENTE MORI.

    The medal fits within a series of images with similar iconographical meaning. A design after Federico Zuccaro from around 1600 (Gabinetto Disegni e Stampe, Galleria degli Uffizi, Florence) shows Raphael holding a sketch of Diana of Ephesus while posed as Isaiah from his frescos at Sant'Agostino in Rome. In his fanciful homage to Raphael, Carlo Maratti also makes this symbolic reference: in the lower left corner, a putto props up an image of Diana. Under the portrait of Raphael, a dedicatory inscription restates Bembo’s epitaph. The engraving served as the frontispiece of Imagines Veteris ac Novi Testamenti a Raphaele Sanctio Urbinate in Vaticani Palatii xystis mira pictura elegantia expressae (1675) which contains reproductions of Raphael’s work made by the printmaker Pietro Aquila. Maratti also designed a portrait of Raphael that was used as the frontispiece for Giovanni Pietro Bellori’s Descrizione delle Stanze di Raffaello (1695). The portrait of the medal, although in profile, closely resembles this image, and is a prototype which derives from Raphael’s self-portrait in the School of Athens. The medal was most likely cast at the same time or slightly after Maratti’s late seventeenth-century designs and before the mention of the same medal type from Brescia in Gaetanis’ Museum Mazzuchelianum of 1761. An illustration of the medal first appears in the frontispiece of Angelo Commoli’s Vita inedita di Raffaello da Urbino (1790), where an inscription notes, the medal used to the image was in the Museo Casali in Rome at the time. A lithograph from 1824 by Fridrich Rehberg represents an image of it enclosed within a laurel wreath. The medal, therefore, proves to be a part of a recurrent tribute to the master which honors him for his creative capacity to surpass Nature.


    Bibliography:
    Brookes, Julian. Taddeo and Federico Zuccaro: artist-brothers in Renaissance Rome. Los
    Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, (ex. cat.), 2007.
    Hall, Marcia, ed. The Cambridge companion to Raphael. Cambridge: Cambridge University
    Press, 2005.
    Ost, Hans. ‘Ein Ruhmesblatt für Raphael bei Maratti und Mengs’, Zeitschrift für
    kunstgeschichte 27 (1965): 281–298.
    Pope-Hennessy, John. Raphael. London: Phaidon Press, 1970.
    Shearman, John. Raphael in early modern sources 1483–1602. New Haven: Yale University
    Press, 2003.
    Schrötter, Elisabeth. ‘Raffael-kult und Raffael-forschung: Johann David Passavant und seine
    Raffael-monographie im kontext der kunst und kunstgeschichte’, Römisches jarhbuch für kunstgeschichte 26 (1990): 303–398.
    Winner, Matthias. ‘Poussins selbstbildnis von 1649’, "Il se rendit en Italie": études offertes à
    André Chastel, Rome (1987): 371–401.

    More 

  • Bibliography

    • Mazzuchelli 1761 pl. Lii, i bibliographic details
  • Subjects

  • Associated names

  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1825

  • Department

    Coins & Medals

  • Registration number

    G3,IP.940

Bronze medal.

Obverse & Reverse

Image description

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Object reference number: CME286595

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