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Stylobate Lions Italian Renaissance c.1460


Regular price £14,000.00
Regular price Sale price £14,000.00
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An outstanding pair of recumbent ‘Stylobate lions’ c.1460 Italian Renaissance, attributed to Umbria, Northern Italy.

Created from carved walnut, with remnants of original polychrome and gilding. The walnut carving is exceptional and bold, particularly notable are their snarling mouths, hooked paws and flowing stylised manes. Their hind legs are tucked neatly along their bodies. The lions ribs are defined and rhythmically carved, their front paws are resting upon scrolled ends.

The form of the Stylobate lions as a style of column support are typical of church portals found throughout Italy in the late Romanesque period. These carved wooden works of art would have been carved as pedestals for columns (indicated by the series of deeply carved out circular spaced forms along the lions flat elongated backs) which would have supported an interior architectural structure, probably supported an interior smaller portal, an elevated window surround or a pulpit within a Noble families private chapel.

This genre of animated menacing lions were often used within churches with thought that they banished evil influences. They were also often used as markers of authority as Churches were used as courts of law, drawing links with King Solomon as a ruler of justice.

  • Width: 20 cm (7.87″)
  • Height: 38 cm (14.96″)
  • Depth: 94 cm (37.01″)