Capital in limestone, 11th century, early Roman, Spain

Capital in limestone, 11th century, early Roman, Spain

Price: Price on request

Offered by J.M. ZEBERG – Fine Art

A capital in the truncated cone design in which the classical Corinthian style has developed into
a triple corona of leaves in which only a few vestiges can be seen of the canonical features. Thus,
the abacus is smaller and less defined whilst the caulicoles, volutes and helixes have become a
simple fillet which separates and frames the leaves on the upper corona and then divides to end
in small spirals on the upper part of the same.
The capital, which is reasonably well preserved, even retains a large amount of its reddish
polychromy, which features on only three of its sides, as the lower part it features a twin-faced
astragal, which reveals the influence of marmoreal models with a laurelled annulet which feature
on the pre-Romanesque churches of the ancient Kingdom of León. These is a series of buildings
and capitals which Spanish historians have attributed to the work of Mozarabic (Christians who
lived under Muslim rule) resettlers, following the major study by Manuel Gómez Moreno.
The three coronas of foliage on the capital are fairly homogenous in nature, with similar
treatment of the beveled carving, with all the leaves featuring a trick, flat central nervure which
ends in strongly pronounced axial foils. This apparent overall monotony is interrupted by the
morphology of the leaves, for whilst those on the lower corona have the shape of a ferule, the
upper ones are formed by two half-leaves which hang from the axial nervure, a style of foliage
which appears in certain Mozarabic capitals on the 10th century in Sahagún and Santa María de
Lebena and is later repeated in those of the group consisting of pieces from Santiago de Penalba,
Santa María de Bamba, San Miguel de Escalada, Calaveras de Abajo and Renedo de
This capital is very similar to another, slightly smaller in size and in a considerably worse state
of repair, which has been published as proceeding from a church which has been demolished in
the region of La Ojeda, in the north of the province of Palencia.
This is a very rare piece which still retains the features of the late and degrades Mozarabic style
at a time when the new Romanesque style had yet to make its appearance.
11th century
43 x 41 x 34 cm

Offered by

J.M. ZEBERG – Fine Art

Vleminckstraat 3
2000 Antwerp

+32 (0)3 345 40 37

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