Aden Kumler, University of Basel
Mittwoch, 13. Oktober 17:00 Uhr
The curious case of the wax lamb: what were medieval agni dei?
This talk examines the curious case of the small wax disks, impressed with the form of the lamb of god, known as agni dei. Highly valued by medieval Christians for their protective powers, references to agni dei appear in a wide range of medieval texts and their metalwork containers survive in numerous collections. Although today scholars define the wax agnus dei as a special kind of “sacramental” made from the wax of the paschal candle and blessed by the pope, closer examination of the textual sources and the surviving material evidence calls into question modern scholarly assumptions about this type of medieval religious artifact. The talk will explore the problems and provocations—at once material, historical, and methodological—that these wax lambs pose to medievalists interested in material culture, particularly the material culture of religion.
Aden Kumler ist Professorin für Ältere Kunstgeschichte an der Universität Basel. Ihre Arbeitsschwerpunkte liegen unter anderem im Bereich Kunst, materielle Kultur und Architektur des europäischen Mittelalters und der interdisziplinären Mediävistik.