Commemorative beaker - inv. 1412

Germany, 17th century

Commemorative beaker
1651
enamel   transparent glass  
height 165 mm
date inscription
"1651"
1879 bequest Gian Giacomo Poldi Pezzoli
Inv. 1412

Dante Study


This commemorative type of beaker, called a “Familienhumpen”, first became common in Germany in the Middle Ages. Cylinder shaped and with a slight bulge in the middle, it is covered with polychrome enamel decorations which represent the members of the family. The father, shown holding a glass, and the mother are larger figures. Inscriptions name them as ANTHONIUS NENTWICH and MARGARETHA NENTWICH. Next to them are the figures of their children: ANNA MARGARETHA N., GASPARIUS NENTWICH, ANNA MARGARETHA, MARGARETHA N., MICHAEL NENTWICH (the last three, clearly dead, are represented kneeling with clasped hands, dressed in white and accompanied by small crosses). A coat of arms, perhaps of the family, is surmounted by the inscription “Gott mitt ons Allen” and next to the mother we read the date 1651.