This beautiful statue was a gift from a German prince to his brother, the Prince of Munich, the most powerful man in Germany at the time. It's workmanship is unparalleled. Seeing it knocks a modern viewer backwards; imagine what it was like seeing it in the 1600s when the viewer understood the realpolitik that lay beneath the enamel and gold.
Statuette of St George (gold, enamel, silver-gilt, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, opals, agate, chalcedony, rock crystal, and other precious stones, pearls; height 50 cm); Munich, 1586/97
The statuette was made to house a relic of St. George that Archbishop Ernst of Cologne sent in 1586 to his brother, Duke Wilhelm V of Bavaria. In the seventeenth century, the statuette was displayed on important feast days on the alter of an opulent chapel, the Reiche Kapelle, in the Munich Residenz. The saint's face behind the removable visor is carved from wood and resembles Duke Wilhelm V. The sword's blade is rock crystal, and both St. George's armor and the horse's barding are intricately enameled and set with stones that are flush with the surface of the piece.