Paris, France, between 1320 and 1340
Silver gilt, translucent enamel (blue, green, yellow, pink, purple), pearls and gems.
open wings: 10 1/4 x 4 3/4 inches (260 x 120 mm); base: 4 3/8 x 4 3/8 inches (110 x 110 mm); open: 10 x 4 7/8 inches (254 x 124 mm)
Inscribed on base, "gift of Thomas Basin, archbishop of Caesarea, who died on 30 December 1491".
Thomas Basin (1402-1491); Count Ferdinand Wolff-Metternich, 1855-1919, Schloss Gracht, Euskirchen; from whom purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan through Jacques Seligmann, May 1911.
When the shrine (polyptych) is open, a statuette of the crowned Virgin holding the Christ Child stands within the central baldacchin, flanked by the twelve Apostles represented on the four hinged wings. When closed, the wings depict the Last Judgement.
The shrine is named after Thomas Basin (Thomas Bazin), Bishop of Lisieux, Archbishop of Caesarea, who gave the work to the Church of St. John in Utrecht. Basin, who died in 1491, is best known for a "Memoire" of 1453, in which he vindicated Joan of Arc. The shrine was in the church of St. John, where Basin is buried, until it was sold in 1610.