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PORTRAIT

MEDALLIONS
IN
THE COLLECTION OF
THE ISPANIC SOCIETY
OF AMERICA

CHARLES THE FIFTH, ISABEL


OF PORTUGAL, AND PHILIP
THE SECOND

PRINTED BY ORDER OF
THE TRUSTEES
NEW YORK
1927

Jyjf&

CONTENTS

CONTENTS
PAGE

....

I Charles the Fifth, Emperor of


the Holy Roman Empire and
King of Spain
11

Isabel of Portugal, Empress of


the Holy Roman Empire and
Queen of Spain

III

...

Philip

the

Bibliography

Second,

King

of

.11

PREFACE

PREFACE
The Italian Renaissance sculptors who
first made portrait medallions popular as a
in
decorative element had precedents
Roman triumphal arches, such as that at
Rimini, and in steles and sarcophagi. An
age which brought the art of the medal to

Origins

its height would naturally have adapted


that style of portraiture to other uses.
Such medallions were among the motives
most eagerly seized upon when the Renais
sance

reached

Spain.

Probably

their

earliest appearance is on the parapet of the


Valencian Lonja, begun by Pedro Compte
in 1482. Hardly a church door of the first
half of the sixteenth century was without
busts of Saint Peter and Saint Paul on
each side or above the portal.

rulers and warriors

are

ranged

Heads of
on

the

facade of the Monastery of San Marcos at

Spanish
usage

MEDALLIONS

Le6n. Patios and cloisters, following the


archetype in the Certosa of Pavia, often had
a series of busts set in medallions in the
spandrels of the arches.
Some ceilings,
such as that of the Monastery of San Zoil

at Carrion de los Condes, show groups of


such medallions, including portraits of the

patron's

family.

Real

and

legendary

characters were sculptured side by side,


much as mythological and historical inci
dents were cited with equal emphasis in the
literary

dialogues

of the day.

Although

fabulous and saintly personages, Roman


warriors, Virtues, and other fanciful types
were the rule, exceptions in which con
Kings,
prelates,
and a
sculptor

temporary celebrities were portrayed are


not infrequent. The Catholic Kings reign
side by side from the central medallion on
the facade of Salamanca University,

and

that Archbishop

Fonseca who was patri


arch of Alexandria presides over the Casa
de

las Muertes in the same city.

manner

Damian

Forment

set

In this
his own

image, vaingloriously, on his retablos at the

Church

of el

Pilar,

Zaragoza,

and at

PREFA CE
Huesca Cathedral. They were a favourite
device of the school of sculptors headed by
Alonso Berruguete.
The portraits of
Charles the Fifth, his wife, and son in the
collection of The Hispanic Society of
America were doubtless set in a facade or
patio in compliment to the royal family,
perhaps on a building endowed by them,
although Charles is not recorded as a great
builder. His important contributions were
the ill-fated palace at the Alharr.bra and
the rebuilding of the Alcazar at Toledo.
These medallions are more faithful like
nesses than are usually to be found and are
in a soberer style than those from the
workshop of Berruguete.

MEDALLIONS

PORTRAIT MEDALLION OF THE


CATHOLIC KINGS
Detail from the facade of
Kalamanca University

PLATE I

D277

CHARLES THE FIFTH

CHARLES THE FIFTH

I
CHARLES THE FIFTH,
EMPEROR OF THE HOLY ROMAN
EMPIRE AND KING OF SPAIN
Charles the Fifth is represented
file, his head turned to the right.

in pro

He wears

the imperial crown, and at his breast is the


About his
badge of the Golden Fleece.
shoulders is a cloak. A shirt with a narrow
turndown collar with pointed ends is visible.
The edge of the medallion which the figure
does not cover is finished with a moulding.
A comparison of the three medallions makes
it appear probable that they were done
about the year 1539, when Charles was
thirty -nine years of age. His appearance is
much the same on a medal by Hans
Reinhard the Elder dated 1537.
High relief. Limestone portrait medallion.

MEDALLIONS
Sixteenth century. Diameter 59.5 cm. On
Pre
background: ENPOR DO CARLOS.
sented to The Hispanic Society of America in
1912.

CHARLES THE FIFTH


Medal by Hans Reinhard the Elder
New York.

The American

Numismatic Society

PLATE II

Dj7

ISABEL OF PORTUGAL

ISABEL OF PORTUGAL

II
ISABEL OF PORTUGAL,
EMPRESS OF THE HOLY ROMAN
EMPIRE AND QUEEN OF SPAIN
Isabel of Portugal, wife of Charles the
Fifth, is represented with her head turned
almost in profile to the left. Over her hair,
looped at the side and flowing at the back,
are a fringed coif and a four-cornered hat
with a rosette at the side. A chemise is
gathered into a tight collar, and the squarecut neck of the dress has a jeweled border.
The Queen wears a necklace, and at her
breast is a large jewel. A moulding borders
the medallion except where the edge is
covered by the figure
Almost all the
familiar portraits of the Empress were, like
Titian's, executed after her death either
from the one taken from the life which was
given to him as a model or from his version.

MEDALLIONS
This was the history of the medals and
statues by Leone and Pompeo Leoni. The
present relief was probably sculptured dur
ing her life, since she did not die until 1539,
and shows a different version of her ap
The arrangement of the hair,
pearance.
which in the Titian portrait is braided at
the sides and then coiled about the head, is
similar to that of the portrait on the ceiling
of the Casa de los Tiros, Granada, erected
probably in the fourth decade of the six
teenth century, although the latter relief
is so crudely executed that it is a caricature.
High relief. Limestone portrait medallion.
Sixteenth century'! Diameter 55.5 cm. On
background: ENPERATRIZ DONA YSAbEL. Presented to The Hispanic Society of
America in 19 12.

ISABEL OF PORTUGAL
Medal by Leone Leoni
New York.

The American Numismatic Society

PLATE III

D278

PHILIP THE SECOND

PHILIP THE SECOND

III
PHILIP THE SECOND,
KING OF SPAIN
Philip the Second is represented as a boy
with his head turned slightly to the left. In
his left hand is a three-towered castle, the

emblem of Castilla,
crown.

He wears

narrow,

flat brim,

and in his right,

with a
and a doublet with

a round

cap

puffed sleeves, gathered skirt, and a nar


row collar ending in points. A soft shirt is
visible at the neck, gathered into a jeweled
band.
appears

Below the collar of


a

chain with

the

large

doublet
pendant.

The medallion is edged with a moulded


border

except

for

the

space

covered

Since portraits of Philip


by the figure.
began to appear only after he had grown
to manhood, this document of his child-

IO

mm'd a

llIons

hood is of especial interest. He seems


to be about twelve years old, an age which
he reached in 1539.

High relief. Limestone portrait medallion.


Diameter 58 cm. On
Sixteenth century.
background:

CASTILLA.

DO FELIPE PRINCEPE D

Presented to
Society of America in 191 2.

The

Hispanic

BIBLIOGRAPHY

11

BIBLIOGRAPHY
Arthur, and Byne, Mrs. Mildred
(Stapley). Spanish architecture of the six
teenth century.
New York and London,

Byne,

1917.

Michel,

Andrd.
Histoire de
v. 3, 2. ptie.
["1905- ].

PijoXn y Sotebas, Jos6.


Barcelona |cl9i4-i6].

Roblot-Delondbe,
fantes.

I'art.

Paris

Hisloria del arte.


3

v.

Portraits d'inLouise.
Paris et Bruxelles, 1913.