Mary And Child Vesica Bronze Seal

£ 1,500.00

A large seal with strap and loop to the reverse. The seal is decorated with an intaglio design of Madonna and Child (Mary and Jesus) within a trefoil arch with cross above. There is a smaller arch below, which contains the supplicant figure of a tonsured monk in prayer. To the border there is a Lombardic script legend – ‘S’ CONVENTVS F R M PREDICATORUM VRG’ M’ (Seal of the Convention… of the Preachers of the Virgin Mary). The seal is accompanied by an impression and collector’s relevant data cards.

Date: Circa 14th Century AD
Provenance: An important London collection of ecclesiastical seals, acquired since the 1970s; found near Rochester, Kent, UK.
Condition: Excellent condition.


During the medieval period, seals were widely used in trading to ensure the authenticity and security of a document or letter. Bronze seals were a possession of the wealthy, since they cost more to produce than lead seals, and had a longer life span on account of the metal’s hardness. The social status of the owner was reflected in the size of the seal, with the combination of motif and text providing further insight into the owner’s identity, such as their place in a family.

The Latin word ‘conventus‘ translates as “coming together” or “meeting”, and the term for a religious community, “convent”, is also derived from this root. In the modern day, a convent is usually associated with a female community (nunnery), but this term was not so restricted during the medieval period.

Weight 18.3 g
Dimensions L 4 cm



Christian Ideology