Virgin and Child
|Date||1022 (original), 1903 (cast)|
|Object type||plaster cast|
|Medium, technique||plaster cast|
420 × 125 × 127 cm
|On view||Star Fortress (Komárom), Corridor H|
With features reminiscent of the triumphal columns of antiquity, the work was commissioned by the bishop of Hildesheim, Bernward (ca. 960–1022), for the church of Saint Michael in Hildesheim, which had been founded by the bishop. In a spiral running up the bronze column, which has stood in Hildesheim Cathedral since the late nineteenth century, we see twenty-eight scenes from the life of Christ. Whereas its models, the columns of Trajan and Marcus Aurelius in Rome, had depicted the heroic deeds of the emperors of ancient times, the Bernward Column depicts the acts of Christ, the “Prince of Peace”, from his baptism in the Jordan until the entry to Jerusalem. Standing almost four meters high, the column was originally topped with a cross, but this was lost during the Reformation.
This record is subject to revision due to ongoing research.