Allegory of the three cardinal virtues Faith, Love, Hope
llegory of the three cardinal virtues Faith, Love, Hope
Allegory of the three cardinal virtues Faith, Love, Hope; probably Frankfurt am Main, 1700-1705. Gold, enamel, diamonds, rubies, silver, gold plated; 15.8 x 7.4 x 5.5 cm. Green Vault, VI 84. © Staatliche Kunstsammlungen Dresden
The belly of the gold-enamelled figure, which was acquired by the Frankfurt jeweler Guillaume Verbecq, forms a baroque pearl. The way it is inserted into the opened abdominal wall, evokes associations with anatomical pupae, which provide insights into the interior of the body. The irregular, organic shape of the large pearl, however, convincingly complements the curves of the body and provides the contrapostic stepping position. The three attributes show the crowned, unclothed female figure as an allegory of faith (cup), hope (anchor) and love (ointment). The loosely supported on the anchor or a chalice holding figure corresponds to a common type of representation, but usually represents only one of the Christian virtues. On the enamel plaque of the pedestal appears an idyllic landscape with five cherubs adoring flower wreaths and baskets to a female figure. The inscription "Foy Esperance et Charité" (Faith, Hope and Love), which appears on a stone cube, repeats in words the allegorical meaning of the pear figure. The email miniature reminiscent of emblems of spring is to be interpreted in this context as Caritas, which is thus additionally emphasized as the highest of the three Christian virtues.