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Neapolitan Relics and Reliquaries in Viceroys' Collections

Fri, March 23, 4:00 to 5:30pm, Hilton Riverside, 3rd Level - Commerce Room


The viceroys of Naples were responsible for the arrival of relics and extraordinary Neapolitan reliquaries in Spain during the seventeenth century. Promoters of religious foundations in those provinces connected to their titles, they arranged the shipment of relics from Naples, entrusting to the main local workshops reliquaries in form of busts or anatomical pieces, usually made by polychrome wood or silver. The aim of this paper is to focus on acquisition, presence and function of Neapolitan relics and reliquaries in the viceroys’ collections, and its impact in Spanish religious culture. Through the study of sources, diaries, and unpublished archival documents, it will survey a phenomenon that since its beginnings, starting from the Council of Trent, was configured as one of the most concrete moment of Spanish religious culture in the baroque era.


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