A & A spacer courtauld institute of art
quick search advanced search browse temp folder

Statuette; known as the Virgin of the Battles ('Virgen de las Batallas') (Side)

Statuette; known as the Virgin of the Battles ('Virgen de las Batallas') (Side)
enlarge image zoom image





Repository Institution

To purchase an image

Seville, Cathedral, Capilla Real

Inv. 4109101110492.000


Height: 435mm
Width: 165mm

Seated Virgin and Child; Child seated on the Virgin's left knee; Christ in long robe; blessing gesture.

Koechlin Number: 0024

Koechlin 1924: France, end of the 3rd quarter of the 13th century.
Villar Movellán 1977: France, 13th century.
Estella Marcos 1984: Spain (?), late 13th-early 14th century.
León 2000-2001 (T. Laguna Paúl): Rheims workshop, 1st half of the 13th century.
Murcia 2009-2010 (T. Laguna Paúl): Rheims workshop, mid 13th century.


Polychromy - Gilding
Traces of polychromy: gold (along the hems), brown (hair), red (lips), black (eyes; eyebrows).

Carved in the round. Back of the throne decorated with blind arches; pinnacles.Large rectangular hole at the back of the throne, where a relic was probably kept.

Object Condition
According to Koechlin (1924), some recarving took place in the 17th century, especially in the arms and heads (chin of the Virgin). Missing: Christ's forearms and hands, right arm of the Virgin (later replacements by Manuel Gutiérrez Reyes Cano, in 1853, who signed his intervention in the palm of the Virgin 'M.G.Ca 1853').

Said to have been given as a present by Saint Louis, King of France (r. 1226-1270) to his cousin Fernando III (b. 1201, d. 1252), king of Castile and León, who is said to have brought it with him in battle against the Saracens; according to 16th-century sources (Sigüenza 1579), at the death of Fernando III, the statuette was placed in his coffin; it is specifically mentioned in the records of the transfer of the royal bodies to the new chapel in 1579. If this were true, it would go against the dating offered by Koechlin and Estella to c. 1275 or later.

A. Muñiz, Insinuación apologética a el rey N. Sr. D. Carlos segundo, para su Santa y Real Capilla de la ciudad de Sevilla en que discurre, y desenvuelven de las mezclas de la confusión que de su venerable antigüedad [...]. [1635 manuscript, Seville Cathedral, pp. 60, 73-74].
D. Ortiz de Zúñiga, Anales eclesiásticos y seculares de la muy noble y muy leal ciudad de Sevilla [...] (Seville, 1795) II, p. 147; IV, p. 100.
C. Boutelou y Soldevilla, 'La Virgen de las Batallas. Escultura de marfil que se conserva en la catedral de Sevilla', in Museo Español de Antigüedades, 1 (1872), pp. 239-251.
J. A. Morgado, 'La histórica imagen de Nuestra Señora de las Batallas venerada en la Real capilla de la Virgen de los Reyes y San Fernando de esta Sta. Iglesia Catedral', in Sevilla Mariana V (Seville, 1883), pp. 358-369.
J. Gestoso-Díaz, Sevilla (Seville, 1890-1892), II, pp. 347-348.
L. Williams, The Arts and Crafts of Older Spain (London, 1907), II, pl. XLIII.
K. Justi, Miscellaneen aus drei Jahrhunderten spanischen Kunstlebens (Berlin, 1908), I, p. 35.
R. Koechlin, Les Ivoires gothiques français (Paris, 1924),I, pp. 28, 34, 62; II, no. 24.
A. Guicho y Sierra, El Cicerone de Sevilla. Monumentos y Bellas Artes, 2 vols (Seville, 1925; reed. in 1991) I, p. 430.
J. Ferrandis Torres, Marfiles y azabaches españoles (Barcelona, 1928), pp. 200-201, pl. LXVIII.
J. Hernández Díaz, 'Estudio de la iconografía mariana hispalense de la época fernandina', in Archivo Hispalense 27-32 (Seville, 1948), pp. 3-38 (pp. 18-20).
J. Durán and A. Ainaud, Escultura gótica (Madrid, 1956), p. 113, fig. 10.
J. Hernández Díaz, Iconografía medieval de la Madre de Dios en el antiguo reino de Sevilla (Madrid, 1971), p. 17, pl. IV, fig. 12.
A. Villar Movellán, La Catedral de Sevilla (Seville, 1977), p. 209, fig. 130.
Morales, Sanz, Serrera and Valdivieso, Guía (Seville, 1981), p. 34.
M. Estella, 'La Talla del marfil', in A. Bonet, Historia de las Artes Aplicadas e Industriales en España (Madrid, 1982), pp. 435-462 [esp. p. 450].
M.-M. Estella Marcos, La Escultura de marfil en España románica y gótica (Madrid, 1984), pp. 152-154, fig. 36.
J. Hernández Díaz, 'Retablos y esculturas', in La Catedral de Sevilla (Seville, 1984), pp. 221-320 (p. 228).
Magna Hispalense: el universo de una Iglesia, exhibition catalogue, Seville, Cathedral, 1992, no. 83, p. 188 (J. M. Palomero Páramo).
Sevilla mariana, exhibition catalogue, Seville, Caja San Fernando, 1996, no. 1 (T. Falcón Márquez).
Metropolis Totius Hispaniae, exhibition catalogue, Seville, Real Alcázar, 1998, no. 29, pp. 242-243 (J. C. Hernández Núñez).
Maravillas de la España medieval. Tesoro sagrado y monarquía, exhibition catalogue, León, Real Colegiata de San Isidro, 2000-2001, p. 250, no. 92 (T. Laguna Paúl).
Alfonso IX y su época, dir. F. López Aldama, exhibition catalogue, Coruña, Kiosko Alfonso, 2008.
Alfonso X el Sabio, ed. by I. Bango Torviso, exhibition catalogue, Murcia, Sala San Esteban, 2009-2010, pp. 334-335 (T. Laguna Paúl).


© Catedral de Sevilla.

All images on this website are made available exclusively for scholarly and educational purposes and may not be used commercially.

spacer spacer spacer spacer
Please remember to acknowledge any use of the site in publications and lectures as: 'Gothic Ivories Project at The Courtauld Institute of Art, London, www.gothicivories.courtauld.ac.uk', followed by the date you accessed the site.