This is a wonderful late Renaissance gold and enamel reliquary pendant, dating to the late 16th - early 17th century. The 18k gold pendant is shaped like a heart, decorated with fine filigree work laid onto a gold sheet, enameled and pierced. The enamel is of a green and white floral design. A similar pendant can be seen hanging from the dress of a young Infanta Ana Maria Mauricia, Anne of Austria (1601–1666) by Juan Pantoja de la Cruz, painted in 1602 (see the last image)
Inside the reliquary are some traces of cloth, relics and a parchment inscription "S.Teresa" likely for Saint Teresa of Avila. This saint was Beatified by Pope Paul V in 1614, then Canonized by Pope Gregory XV in 1622. Both the Beatification and Canonization are contemporary with this pendant and would, in my opinion, have been made to house these relics.
This is a unique and very rare object, in excellent condition. Some loss to the enamel but otherwise intact with the original suspension ring.
OBJECT: Reliquary Pendant
CULTURE: Spanish Renaissance/Baroque
DATE: c. 1580 - 1620 A.D.
MATERIAL: Gold & Enamel
SIZE: 44mm x 32mm x 7mm
WEIGHT: 11.01 grams
PROVENANCE: Ex. European Private Collection, Zaragoza in Spain.
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