The patronage of the Cantacuzino family marked an outstanding period in Wallachia1 from many perspectives. Three generations of this family, whose members considered themselves the descendants of Byzantine basileis, contributed to an era of flourishing arts in the region where they settled in the early seventeenth century. In the same manner as Konstantinos Korniaktos in Lemberg (Lwów; Lviv),2 they left behind an impressive legacy of great artistic value through manifold forms of patronage, a remarkable example of how cultural “switching” systems assimilated, translated, and linked cultures between the Greek East, the Latin West, and the Ottoman Orient. The foundation of their artistic patronage was not only their wealth and ambition but, importantly, their large network of powerful and influential family members.
Established in Moldavia and then in Wallachia, the descendants of the once powerful archon Michael Kantakouzenos adapted quickly to the new cultural environment and, through well-planned marital alliances, became part of the local elites. However, they did not forget their Greek roots and kept close relations, not only with the Constantinopolitan Greeks but also with the Greek diaspora from Italy, and these connections had an impact on their patronage. Although they did not dispose of fabulous wealth like their ancestor nicknamed Şeytanoğlu, they nevertheless acted as self-aware patrons, the progeny of archons. Thus, Şerban Cantacuzino patronized not only the monastery founded by him in Cotroceni but also Mount Athos. As a sign of their intellectual elasticity, some of the family members had libraries in their residences (or in the monasteries founded by them), which, though not extensive, contained Latin volumes as well.3 They followed traditions, but at the same time, they were open to the world around them: to the Greek East, to the Mediterranean, to the Ottoman Orient, and to Central Europe. And their patronage reflects these features.
There is little evidence regarding the masters and architects who worked for the Cantacuzini, but a closer analysis of the works of art that survived offers sufficient information: the ornaments and techniques used point to the place where they come from.
Likewise, very little or almost nothing is known about the architects they employed or the stone carvers who made the splendid ornaments in stone and also worked for the family. In some cases, locals, or masters coming from Moldavia may be assumed, in others, stone carvers from the Mediterranean or from Central Europe. The muqarnas decorations that appear on the katholika of monasteries patronized by the Cantacuzini suggest that the contributions of masters who came from an Islamic milieu were also demanded and appreciated.4 Similarly, the stucco ornaments that were inspired by Persian miniatures and decorate the outer walls of the church from Fundeni dedicated to St. Euthymios indicate that not just the ornamental repertoire of European art should be taken into account when their patronage is examined (the founding inscription of the church is in a cartouche decorated with rollwork). The same hybridity can be noticed on some of the goldsmithery they commissioned. Indeed, the richly ornamented basin and ewer made for Voivode Şerban (and kept today in the Metropolitan Museum of Art), with an Islamic shape and Western floral decoration, could be considered as iconic of the Cantacuzini’s patronage.
Some of the monasteries that this essay discusses are no longer extant, but many artworks, especially exquisite works in silver, have survived. Due to the makers mark, goldsmithery offers the opportunity of identification, if not of the master at least of the city where he was active. The essay aims to explore this segment of the Cantacuzini5 patronage.
1 The Kantakouzenoi in Wallachia and Their Architectural Patronage
The story of the Kantakouzenoi developed from the seashore to the riverbed, beginning at the shores of the Black Sea at Anchialos (Ahyolu Pomorie),6 where Michael Kantakouzenos (nicknamed Şeytanoğlu), owner of the local salt works, built his sumptuous palace. He controlled almost the entire salt trade in Wallachia due to a trade privilege obtained from Sokollu Mehmed Pasha7 and became one of the most influential magnates in the region.8 In fact the Kantakouzenoi had control over the Danubian salt trade, and they dealt not just with the extraction of salt but also with its transportation, as they owned a large fleet.9 Being one of the most powerful archons, Michael Kantakouzenos was deeply involved in the ecclesiastical matters of the patriarchate of Constantinople.10 In 1578, the fortunes of the Kantakouzenoi turned as Şeytanoğlu was executed in his palace at Anchialos by a special envoy of the sultan. The eldest of his sons, Andronikos, fled to Constantinople, asking for Sokollu Mehmed Pasha’s protection. After a short period, he regained part of the family fortune and continued to run its affairs. In time, he became more and more involved in the power struggles north of the Danube.
Several years after his death in 1601 under obscure circumstances, Andronikos’s sons came to Wallachia with Radu Mihnea’s entourage, obtaining through their skills different positions in the administrative system, usually serving first as bostanik and then as treasurer.11 Three of them entered the network of local elites through well-planned marital strategies, thus considerably increasing their fortune. Thomas married Eftimia Ciolpan, the niece of the voivode of Moldavia, Miron Barnovski. He served in as bostanik from 1618, and from 1630 as stolnik.12 Iordaki married the daughter of logothete Pătraşco Şoldan, Catrina, the sister-in-law of Basil Lupu, the voivode of Moldavia, and was treasurer from 1632.13 Both were highly appreciated in Moldavia for their skills and services.14 On their large estates, they constructed several mansion complexes, often comprising a church. Thomas owned mansions in Budeşti, Iordaki in Paşcani, and Cârligi. Around 1640, he also erected a church in Iaşi.15 As benefactors, the Kantakouzenos brothers offered many donations to different monasteries, and being intimate advisers of Voivode Basil Lupu,16 they joined his ambitious patronage of the arts, which resulted in a remarkable mixture of Eastern and Western influences.
Konstantinos, the third of the brothers who decided to remain behind, became cupbearer in Wallachia, then high cupbearer in Moldavia.17 He married Ilinca (Elina),18 daughter of Radu Şerban, the former voivode who died in exile in Vienna. With Ilinca’s impressive dowry, the freshly married couple became one of the richest families in the land. She inherited large estates around Coiani and in the valley of Prahova, where they managed to acquire further estates, benefiting from the fact that the trade route, which linked the Transylvanian cities with the northeastern Balkans, moved from the valley of Teleajen to the valley of Prahova.19 From 1632 on, Konstantinos served as bostanik to the voivode of Wallachia, Matei Bassarab. For more than two decades he was a respected and indispensable adviser of the voivode.
In order to be within close proximity to the court, Konstantinos erected a house in Târgovişte, next to the voivode’s court complex, where he stayed when his presence was required. But his primary residence was in the valley of Prahova, at Filipeştii de Târg. Built with a new type of vaulting, unknown before in Wallachia and decorated with a loggia, the mansion set a new model for the boyars’ residences from the region.20 In 1654 Paul of Aleppo visited it, together with Makarios III, the patriarch of Antioch, and describes it in his account as follows:
“Having left the church, we alighted at the palace of the Bostanik, which consists of princely buildings, that surprise the senses, and are handsomer than the city edifices. It has a delightful warm bath of beautiful marble, to which water is raised by wheels fixed on the river, which flows also into the orchards and gardens by innumerable channels. The apartments in it are in exact resemblance to the buildings of Constantinople: as, indeed, all the Wallachian Grandees have villas which are admirable specimens of architecture. Each of them is sure to possess, among his buildings, at least one large convent, with its many fiefs; and they are each of them jealous of their fellows in regard to the beauty of their structures and establishments. All their ambition and pride center here.”21
First, however, he describes the monastery that was rebuilt entirely by the bostanik in the forests of Mărgineni, not far from his residence:
“On the morning of Tuesday we came to the Convent of St. Nicolas, known by the name of the Convent of the Bostanik, Kyr Constantine, our friend. This person is said to be of the blood of the Katakozinos, Emperors of Greece. He it was that built this convent entirely new, and of such a construction as to excite the admiration of the beholder. The church has a high dome covered with tin and three tabernacles, over each of which is a handsome cupola. Before the gate is a round and wide cupola with many arches; in the middle of which is a pond of water, with an elevated pipe, through which the water is conducted from a distance. There is no person in this country who has formed ponds and fountains of water by leading to them distant streams, except this Bostanik. This cupola is entirely covered with paintings inside as “Praise the Lord from the heavens” and all kinds of animals and beasts of the earth and sea are there and “Praise God in his saints” and the virgins are dancing, and the judges and the old men and youths, to the beating of the drum and the tune of pipes: and there are other similar paintings, all of which astonish you with surprise, and are the performance of an able master, the same who was engaged on the painting of the convents of Vasili Beg of Moldavia.”22
In addition to many other things, the passage provides information that attests to a popular awareness of Kyr Konstantinos’s imperial origins, a subject Stephan Gerlach also addresses in his account about Şeytanoğlu.23 Other sources corroborate that the bostanik was considered by his contemporaries to be a descendant of the Byzantine emperors.24
A remarkable gospel cover, with the Anastasis on the front panel and the Crucifixion at the back, once belonged to this monastery (Fig. 10.1).25 It is decorated in silver-gilt and blue enamel and encloses a Gospel printed at Vilna26 in 1644. The text of the Gospel is in Old Slavonic, but the inscription on the back of the silver cover is in Greek.27 It mentions the defunct voivode of Ungro-Wallachia, Şerban,28 his son, Voivode Constantin,29 Bostanik Konstantinos Katakouzenos, Ankoutza (Ancuţa), her sister Elina, Stolnik Dumitra[s]kou (Dumitraşcu),30 and the treasurer Istrati. All were relatives of Konstantinos,31 but the inscription in Greek suggests that he was in fact the main patron. It is worth mentioning that he had previously collaborated with Dumitraşcu Filipescu, as both were founders of the Dormition of the Virgin Church from Filipeştii de Târg.32
The realism of the scenes on the gospel covers, as well as the individuality and expressiveness of the faces, make it an outstanding work, which has been attributed to a Transylvanian workshop.33 The attribution is plausible, all the more so given that Konstantinos traveled to the Principality of Transylvania several times, first as an envoy of the voivode Matei Bassarab, then in exile.34 As Georg Krauss points out in his chronicle,35 he was well-known there, as he was considered a respectable man with large connections. It is more than likely that the defunct voivode was mentioned in the inscription of the gospel cover because Ilinca (Elina) wished to include the memory of her father in the donation. The memory of her ancestors was kept alive in the names of the boys as well: their first son was named Drăghici, in memory of her great-grandfather (Drăghici from Mărgineni),36 the second boy was named Şerban, after her father, and the third boy was baptized with the name of his father, Konstantinos.
The boys were educated at Târgovişte by Panteleimon Ligaridis and later obtained different positions in the administration. Drăghici served as logothete and then high cupbearer, Şerban as cupbearer, and Constantin as second bostanik in his youth.37 The younger boys, Mihai, Matei, and Iordaki, followed the same pathway. The girls also were married in a well-planned manner to rich and influential boyars (Marica became the wife of Spatharus Pană Filipescu,38 Stanca married Papa Brancovan, and Ancoutza’s husband was Bostanik Ianaki).39
In 1663 a tragedy occurred that affected the whole family: the head of the family, Konstantinos, was killed in the trapeza of the Snagov monastery by his enemies.40 After Voivode Grigore Ghika was deposed, with the new voivode, Radu Leon (nicknamed the Oysterseller),41 came better times for the Cantacuzini. Drăghici became spatharus and Şerban bostanik.42 Constantin went to Constantinople and then to Padua via Venice to complete his studies. At that time, many Greeks preferred to study there. He matriculated at the University of Padova as Constantinos Cantacuzenus Constantinopolitanus.43
Meanwhile, Drăghici died in Constantinopole leaving Şerban as head of the family and in the position of spatharus. But when Ghika returned in 1672, they were once again persecuted and forced to go into exile on Crete.44 They returned a year later with the new voivode, Georgios Doukas, who was an old acquaintance of the family. Things went well at the beginning, but with time, the relations become more and more tense, especially when rumors spread that Şerban, then great logothete, and Anastasia, the voivode’s wife, had become lovers while Doukas was away on a military campaign.45 When Doukas sent a troupe of horsemen to capture him, he fled and hid in the woods around Cotroceni. After hiding there for days, he reached Adrianople by crossing the Danube, which once carried his grandfather’s boats with their supplies and salt, and through his influential protector, Kara Mustafa Paşa, managed to install himself as Doukas’s successor.46 Thus, he became voivode of Wallachia.
As ruler Şerban set new standards. Just like Şeytanoğlu, his great grandfather,47 he “was master in everything, governing after his liking.”48 Just a month after he became voivode, he began to build a monastery in Cotroceni on the site where he had hidden out and where there was already a small wooden church. The katholikon of the newly erected monastery was finished in 1680 and later became Şerban’s own burial place (part of the family was also buried there). The monastery was offered in 1682 to Mount Athos, as well as to all the monasteries from Athos, and the founding act stipulated that Greek monks would worship the Lord in it.49 Around 1683, Şerban erected in it a building that would later serve as his temporary residence.
Upon finishing the monastery, he began to build a large han, which was considered extraordinary in comparison with the hans previously built in Wallachia.50 It is more than likely that he looked to the hans he had encountered while in Constantinople as models.51 It is also probable that it was built by the same masters who worked at the Cotroceni monastery,52 and it is also possible that these masters came from an Islamic artistic milieu. Muqarnas decorations appear on several churches erected or renovated by the Cantacuzini, such as the katholikon from Cotroceni or Dintr-un Lemn monastery and the “Doamnei” church53 (endowed by the second wife of Şerban, Maria Gheţea).
Şerban’s brothers also erected several churches in the Prahova valley and its surroundings (Afumaţi, Filipeştii de Pădure, Măgureni) and renovated churches at Coiani and Târgovişte.54 The most interesting and original contribution was Mihai’s who, after a pilgrimage with his mother and sister Stanca to the Holy Land,55 built a monastery at Râmnicu Sărat together with Stanca’s son, Constantin Brancovan, and later founded a skete called Sinai in the Bucegi (Carpathian) Mountains.56 He also contributed donations to the endowment of the St. Nicholas church from Braşov (Brassó; Kronstadt; among the other items donated by him, a silver box with a spoon and a lamp are mentioned in the church inventories).57 Around 1699 he built a church in the surroundings of Bucharest (which probably was part of his residence that is no longer extant) the very first in Wallachia, dedicated to Euthymius the Great.58 The outer walls of the church were decorated with stuccos inspired by Persian miniatures, the inner with frescoes by Pârvu Mutu, who painted many churches endowed by Cantacuzini. The last and maybe the most important of his legacy was the Colţea monastery, founded in Bucharest in 1701, which included a hospital, the very first in Wallachia.
2 Goldsmiths and Journeymen
Del Chiaro, Constantin Brancovan’s Italian secretary, remembers Şerban as a Maecenas, someone who introduced a more civilized way of life at his court. One such elegant addition to daily life was the use of silverware for domestic purposes,59 some of which survives. The decoration of a silver plate, used as liturgical plate60 at the Cotroceni monastery, suggests that originally it was probably intended for domestic purposes and might have been used at his court (Fig. 10.2). The plate is decorated with embossed flowers: tulips, narcissus, and peonies. According to the Greek inscription engraved on the back, it was donated to the Cotroceni monastery in 1680.61 The central part of the plate bears the coat of arms of the Cantacuzino family (a double-headed eagle with a scepter in its left claw and a sword in its right) with a crown above and the initials of Şerban. The double-headed eagle appeared in the seal of Konstantinos Kantakouzenos and in the seals used by his son as an allusion to the Byzantine imperial roots claimed by the Kantakouzenoi.62
On the rim of the plate there is a maker’s mark identified as EV.63 It appears on an octagonal plate64 donated by Drăghici’s son Pârvu and his wife Ilinca to St. Nicholas Church in Braşov (Fig. 10.3).65 For a long time it was used as a liturgical plate, but its decoration—very similar to the plate from the Cotroceni monastery—indicates that it was initially made for domestic purposes. It does not bear any coat of arms. Pârvu was Şerban’s envoy in the Principality of Transylvania,66 and he had the opportunity to acquire it there.
It must be mentioned that two silver plaques, which once decorated liturgical vestments, have been identified in the same ecclesiastical collection. According to the inscriptions around the medallions (which represent the Virgin with the Child in front and the enthroned Virgin with the Child, flanked by two angels), they were offered by Voivode Şerban, probably together with the liturgical vestments which they adorned.
There is another variant of the arms adopted by Şerban: the double-headed eagle with a raven on the central part of its breast; the raven with a cross in its beak was the coat of arms of Wallachia in its traditional form. This was a hybrid formula displaying his imperial descent metaphorically and suggesting his secret hopes of the restoration of the Byzantine Empire under a new Kantakouzenos dynasty.67 At the same time, this variant displayed the priority given to his paternal descent. In accordance with his hybrid coat of arms, his voivode entitlement lists both names: “I, Şerban Cantacuzino Bassarab.”68 The first who claimed a Bassarab descent was his grandfather, Radu Şerban.69 The renovation of the katholikon of Argeşului monastery originally erected by Neagoe Bassarab was an act intended to emphasize that Şerban considers himself to be of Bassarab descent.
The hybrid eagle-and-raven coat of arms appears on another splendid example of domestic silver: an ewer and a basin bearing his initials (Fig. 10.4).70 The shape of the ewer and basin is typical of Islamic models: the pierced upper part of the basin will stop the water poured from the ewer from splashing over.71 This structure made that type of basin serve the purpose in a more hygienic way than the Western examples, which were flat. And yet, its lavish decoration is Western, more typical of the Central European Baroque. Both the ewer and the basin bear the same maker’s mark as the silver plate from the Cotroceni monastery. A closer analysis of the mark reveals that the letters have been mistakenly read:. It is not a combination of the letters E and V but a P with an A above it.
The demands of Wallachian voivodes in relation to silver items were satisfied mainly either by Hungarian masters (usually goldsmiths from Saxon cities under Hungarian rule) or by Balcanic silversmiths (such as those from Chiprovtsi, a mining center where a Catholic Bulgarian enclave lived). The ewer and basin bear a maker’s mark that points to a Hungarian master, but who was he? Wallachian voivodes preferred to commission silverworks from Hermannstadt (Nagyszeben; Sibiu)72 or Kronstadt (Brassó; Braşov),73 both Saxon cities, indicating that he must have been a German-speaking Hungarian subject.
It had been a long tradition for Wallachian potentates to commission silverworks from Hungary. There, the goldsmiths’ guilds were the operational units providing the workshops with precious metal, controlling the frames of the production, and in the case of large orders, the chief masters distributed the work.74 In order to preserve larger interests, the guilds from the Saxon cities in Transylvania forbade the masters from working outside of Hungary. But the commissions coming from the South and sometimes from the East (from Moldavia) represented a profitable opportunity, and the guilds tried to satisfy the demands at the highest level when it was requested from them. Strict rules and severe control were the guarantees of quality. It was stipulated that it was compulsory for every master to punch his mark on silverworks made in his workshop. The makers’ marks were registered by the guild and usually kept together with the documents of the guild in the chief master’s house. Unfortunately, only the lead tablet containing the makers’ marks of the guild from Nagyszeben has been preserved.75 The register of marks from Brassó has been lost, but the guild records of both cities can be consulted.
In the records, there is no master with the initials PA or AP active during the period from 1678 to 1688, when Şerban ruled. Corina Nicolescu remarked that the master who worked for the Cantacuzini disappeared in 1685.76 There were many masters called Paul or Peter in Nagyszeben and Brassó, but only one who died in 1685: Paul Schirmer, the chief master of the goldsmith’s guild from Nagyszeben. The letter A, which appears above the P, is not the initial for his surname (which sometimes appears in the records as Schermer) but for “aurifaber.” While it is odd that he did not use the initial of his surname, it appears that two masters with the initials PS had already entered the guild,77 so he had to choose another combination of the letters in order to avoid confusion. As such, it is seems that his option was PA, for Paul aurifaber. He entered the guild in 1656, at the age of 23.78 Usually, the mark of the new master was punched on the lead tablet in order to register it. Unfortunately, the tablet is damaged on the upper portion of the back side where the row follows the marks of the masters who entered the guild between 1648 to 1661, so his mark is not visible.79
He must have attracted a measure of prestige, because in 1671 he was elected younger chief master, and in 1678—the year Şerban obtained the voivodeship— he became senior chief master.80 Being in charge of the distribution of the work following the commissions of the new voivode, it seems that he had ensured the opportunity for himself. At that time he had two apprentices: his son Georg (until November 1680) and Daniel Groll (until December 1681),81 who likely contributed to delivering the expected quality of the solicited silverworks in a timely manner.
The type of the basin, with a pierced upper portion characteristic of Islamic examples, was unknown in Central Europe, where the goldsmith was from. The envoy of the patron probably delivered a model of the ewer and basin (similar to the copper examples that are still preserved in the monastery treasuries from Oltenia),82 which the goldsmith followed. The form is Islamic, but the decoration is entirely Western. A pattern book containing drawings and prints that once belonged to Paul Schirmer83 and was inherited by his son, Paul Schirmer Junior, has also been preserved.84 More than likely he used the prints pasted in the pattern book, which display friezes with birds in various positions and attitudes among leafy plants. They are similar to those decorating the upper part of the basin.
The luxurious gilt-silver ewer and basin represented an important accessory of court ceremonies. Before official meals, the voivode washed his hands, and it was the task of a high ranked servant (called a “medelnicer”) to pour water over the basin and onto the voivode’s hands. The set was probably on display in the voivode’s residence. It seems that after his death it was inherited by Şerban’s son-in-law Dimitrie Cantemir, who married his daughter Cassandra in Iaşi around 1700.85 It probably was part of Cassandra’s dowry. Dimitrie was the kapithia of his brother Antioh, and the couple lived in Constantinople until 1710,86 when Cantemir became hospodar of Moldavia and they moved to Iaşi. But soon Cantemir had to flee to Russia after losing the battle in Stănileşti against the Ottomans. The object thus traveled a long and winding path until the ewer and basin arrived in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.87
Besides liturgical silver, monastery treasuries also preserved domestic silver items. A silver tankard with scale decoration from the Cotroceni monastery bears Paul Schirmer’s mark.88 The Cotroceni monastery served as one of Şerban’s residences, and the tankard probably was in use and kept there as part of the domestic silver. For the endowment of the monastery Şerban commissioned two gospel covers, and later a pair of processional ripidia (liturgical fans). One of the gospels is in Greek and was printed in Venice in 1671, while the other is in Old Slavonian and was printed in Lemberg (Lwów; Lviv)89 in 1670,90 but on both covers the offering inscriptions are in Greek. According to this, the first cover was made in 1680. It is decorated with the Anastasis in the center and with the figures of the apostles on both sides. On the back, the Crucifixion is the focal scene, while the corners are occupied by the evangelists, and the sides by figures of prophets. Paul Schirmer repeated the same iconographic scheme on a gospel cover commissioned in 1682 by Spatharus Constantin Brancovan for the Bistriţa monastery;91 in 1684, working for the same patron, he made a gospel cover for the Dintr-un Lemn monastery92 with a Western-style representation of the Virgin and Child on the back.
The second gospel cover was made in 1681 according to the inscriptions in Greek (Fig. 10.5). The central part is decorated with the Crucifixion on the front and the Anastasis on the back, while oval medallions depict scenes from the Revelation, inspired by the illustrations from the Bible in Luther’s translation, which in turn reproduce engravings by Lucas Cranach, and the corners are occupied by the prophets and the evangelists. Corina Nicolescu read the maker’s mark as CV.93 Yota Ikonomaki-Papadopoulos published a similar gospel cover from the Simonopetra monastery on Mount Athos (and mentions another example in the collection of the Xeropotamou monastery) and read the mark as VA IC.94 Both gospel covers (from the Simonopetra and Cotroceni monasteries) bear Valentin Igell’s mark, who entered the goldsmiths’ guild of Brassó in 1666.95 There is a short chronicle in the manuscript kept in the collections of the Simonopetra monastery that relates how the hieromonk Gregorios of Simonopetra was very unsatisfied with the first book cover made in 1657 and sent it back to Brassó, where a new one was made in 1677.96 The voivode was probably apprised about the outcome97 and the successful fulfillment of the hieromonk’s demand, which might have contributed to the commission of another richly decorated gospel cover, this time from Felten Igell.98
A similar gospel cover was identified by Marcu Beza in the collections of the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Jerusalem and mentioned by Yota Ikonomaki-Papadopoulos.99 In 1681, Ilinca, together with her daughter Stanca and her son Mihai, went on pilgrimage to the Holy Land.100 Further research will clarify if the gospel cover from Jerusalem can be related to Ilinca’s pilgrimage from 1681 to 1684. Potentate pilgrims usually brought gifts with them in order to donate them, the Cantacuzin Chronicle mentions that they “offered silver and gold to the Holy Sepulcher as much as they had brought with them.”101 A golden plaque donated to the Holy Sepulcher, kept in the Treasury of the Patriarchate of Jerusalem, was part of these offerings.102
After his return, Mihai erected a monastery at Râmnicu Sărat and offered it to the monastery of St. Catherine on Mount Sinai. The donation was made together with Constantin Brancovan, who was not just his half-orphan nephew but “a creation of the clan”103 and a member of it for a long time. His patronage was part of the Cantacuzini’s art patronage; until he decided to follow his own path. In several cases, he commissioned works of art from the same artists, following his uncles’ example. Just like in the case of the gospel covers, Brancovan commissioned a pair of ripidia for the Bistriţa monastery from Paul Schirmer, which repeat the iconographical scheme of those from the Cotroceni monastery, but without the representation of the donator’s family.104 This iconographical scheme represented a new feature, because before neither the decoration of the ripidia nor that of the liturgical plates displayed the dedication of the church, which in the case of Cotroceni monastery was the Dormition of the Virgin and Saint Serghius and Bacchus.105 The central part of a liturgical plate made by the same goldsmith and donated in 1685 by Constantin Brancovan to Bistriţa monastery is decorated with the scene of the Dormition of the Virgin in accordance with the dedication of the katholikon.106 For the same monastery, he also made an octagonal plate with the same type of representation of the Virgin and Child in the center,107 which is similar to the one on the back of the gospel cover from Dintr-un Lemn monastery.
Paul Schirmer was not the only master from Nagyszeben whose work was part of the endowment of the Cotroceni monastery. Just like the senior one, the junior chief master, who at that time was Merten Herman Junior,108 also made claim to this lucrative opportunity, making a pair of candlesticks for the monastery.109 After Paul Schirmer died in 1685, the voivode applied to the chief master from Brassó, Hans Hennek (Johannes Henning),110 who made several lamps decorated with fleshy flowers for the Cotroceni monastery,111 which were still in fashion at that time.
The kivotia and katzi from the Cotroceni monastery were made by unidentified masters. According to the inscription displayed on a light blue enameled background, the kivotion, reproducing a church at small scale, was donated by Şerban in 1685 along with an identical vessel (likely intended for the chapel) (Fig. 10.6).112 The katzi, donated in 1686, is decorated on its flat part with the Dormition of the Virgin (in accordance with the dedication of the katholikon), below which kneels the donator and his family (Fig. 10.7).113
Thomas Klosch, another goldsmith (and a former chief master) from Brassó,114 made a pair of candlesticks for the same monastery,115 as well as two lamps, decorated with Şerban’s coat of arms, which were donated by Constantin Brancovan to the Bistriţa monastery around 1689116 according to the inscription incised on the upper part of the candles.117 The coat of arms clearly indicates that the lamps were made for Şerban. He died suddenly in October 1688,118 at which point the lamps were not yet delivered. Brancovan, who became voivode after Şerban’s death, forced the widow to give up part of her family fortune, claiming that Şerban failed to pay the annual tribute to the Ottomans.119 He probably took the lamps, paying for them or confiscating them, and finally donated them to Bistriţa monastery.120
Şerban’s second wife, Maria, and his daughters also contributed to the art patronage of the family. Maria, who was of humble origins, founded a church in Bucharest dedicated to the Entry of the Virgin into the Temple,121 without doubt with the support of her husband. The church was a metochion of the Cotroceni monastery,122 and it was probably built with the contribution of the same masters who had built the monastery. This dual patronage can also be observed in the case of church embroideries. It is presumed that the three, almost identical, epitaphioi depicting the Descent from the Cross (the first was gifted by Şerban and Maria to the Cotroceni monastery in 1680, the second to the Tismana monastery in 1681, and the third to the Doamnei church in 1683)123 were made by the same embroiderers.
Later, in 1688, Maria donated lamps to the Măgureni monastery that were commissioned from Georg May (II),124 a goldsmith from Brassó, who also worked for Constantin Brancovan. In 1709, together with her daughter Maria (Constantin Bălăceanu’s widow),125 and with the financial support of the ecclesiarch Neophytos, Maria dedicated a reliquary casket126 for the skull of St. Gregory the Theologian to the Vatopaidi monastery on Mount Athos.127 The relic often accompanied the monks from Mount Athos as they went on alms missions, and it was probably on such a mission into Wallachia that the reliquary casket was made.128 The body of the vessel is covered with gilt floral ornament and acanthus leaves on a silver ground, while the lid is decorated with the standing figures of the Three Hierarchs. Smaranda, Şerban’s daughter who died at a young age, donated a lamp commissioned from Sebastian Hann to the Sărindari monastery129 shortly after she became Grigore Băleanu’s wife.130
The son of Drăghici, named Şerban like his uncle, and nicknamed Măgureanu (after the Măgureni village where he owned land) contributed to the renovation of the Cozia and Comana monasteries (the latter was the burial place of his third father, Voivode Radu Şerban).131 In the first period of the renovations he donated an artophorion to Comana that was made in Venice by an unidentified master, who used the maker’s mark ST,132 in the memory of his parents and his two wives.133 The artophorion, unlike the widespread type (shaped like a church-like casket), has a cylindrical shape, is topped with a dome,134 and is decorated with standing figures. Şerban Măgureanu’s further donations, together with his second wife Andreiana, to the Radu Vodă monastery, the Târnovului monastery, and posthumously in 1710 to the Surpatele monastery,135 and to the Dormition of the Virgin monastery from Râmnicu Sărat,136 point to his preference for the same Venetian goldsmith. In all four cases, the ornament of the plates indicates that they were initially designed for domestic purposes.
3 The End of a Clan but Not of a Legacy
Ştefan, the son of Constantin, became voivode in 1714, and confident that he would be able to rule for an extended period, started to renovate the Annunciation Church from the old court complex, as well as the Church of St. Peter and Paul.137 During the same period, he also built a “palazzino” in the garden of his residence.138 However, soon after, in 1716, he was replaced with Nikolaos Mavrokordatos, who realized the Cantacuzini were still a powerful clan and that the consolidation of his own position was contingent upon their annihilation. Through compromising letters, he managed to charge the family and ultimately have Constantin and Ştefan executed in Constantinople. Soon after, Mihai was also executed in Adrianople. After ensuring the end of the clan, Mavrokordatos commissioned the construction of a magnificent monastery in Văcăreşti, near Bucharest—a monument that paradoxically represented the very apogee of the artistic blossoming under the Cantacuzini.
Much has been written about the works that were created under the Cantacuzini’s patronage, and they are considered expressions of the so-called Brancovan style (after the name of Voivode Brancovan). A brief examination of the surviving works reveal that while the architecture and goldsmithery they commissioned followed an innovative way, comprised of Oriental traits and new ornamental motifs borrowed from Western European art, the liturgical textiles, or church paintings, kept to the tradition, respecting the canons of Eastern religious art. The ornamental sculptures (mainly tombstones) could be included in the first group, though they do not display Oriental features. This hybridity was not always the outcome of a situation in which masters coming from different cultural areas worked together in order to create a building complex or a work of art. Following a model from a realm other than the artist’s could also result in a hybrid work of art, just like in the case of the basin that once belonged to Şerban Cantacuzino. With a shape typical for Islamic lavabo sets, it was not made by a goldsmith from the Ottoman Empire but by a master who was a German-speaking Hungarian subject of the Transylvanian Principality. It is more than likely that he worked following an Oriental model that was probably sent to him by the patron.
The Hungarian goldsmiths became acquainted with the ornamental repertoire of the newest fashions in decorative arts during their journeyman years, spent mostly in Central Europe, and sometimes in Western and Northern Europe. Usually they returned back to their hometown in order to become members of the guild, along with prints they had collected in their travels bound together into pattern books. These prints, just like the books of ornaments—especially the frontispieces—played an important role in the transmissions of ornamental motifs and compositional schemes. Pattern books were used not only by goldsmiths but also by stone carvers. Salient similarities, which can be noticed between some ornamental sculptures of the Black Church in Braşov, the stone frames of the main entrance of the katholikon of the Hurezi monastery, or the stone fragments from Văcăreşti monastery, suggest that it is likely they were made by the same masters or group of masters who strongly influenced each other.139 Not just the same decorative pattern was followed, but even the stone-carving technique is similar. Since we lack written sources referring to the building process, all this must remain supposition.
We still know very little about the creation process of the surviving works, of how architects and craftsmen were chosen, and how decisions on design and decoration were made. But what we can say with certainty is that the Cantacuzini’s ambitions, wealth, and taste set new standards for arts patronage in Wallachia and resulted in remarkable works of art that display an original mixture of local, Western, and Oriental elements. Aesthetically important for the art of the region, this approach continued until the recent past.
I would like to express my gratitude to Alina Payne, Ioli Kalavrezou, Gülru Necipoğlu, Elizabeth Kassler-Taub, Mary Clare Altenhofen, András Riedlmayer, and Mathilde Bonvalot (Harvard University), and to offer my special thanks to Carmen Tănăsoiu (National Museum of Art of Romania, Bucharest), Vasile Oltean (Saint Nicholas Church, Braşov), Florica Zaharia, Wolfram Koeppe, Melissa Chumsky (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York), and Father Maximos (Simonopetra Monastery, Mount Athos).
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. “ Coţovanu, Lidia Chi ‘finanziò’ gli studi a Padova di siniscalco Costantino Cantacuzeno (1667–1669)?” In La storia di un riconoscimento: I rapporti tra l’Europa Centro—Orientale e la Penisola italiana dal Rinascimento all’Età dei Lumi, 291– 329. A cura di Cristian Luca e Gianluca Masi. Brăila: Museo di Brăila, Istros Editrice; Udine: Campanotto Editore, . 2012
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. “ Ikonomaki-Papadopoulos, Yota Book Cover ‘by the Hand of Loukas of Hungary-Wallachia’ and ‘Iakovos, Hieromonk of Simonopetra.’” In Treasures of Mount Athos, edited by , A.A. Karakatsanis 370– 371. Thessaloniki: Ministry of Culture, Museum of Byzantine Culture, . 1997
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. “ Paolicchi, Anita Argenteria veneziana acquistata al tempo di Constantin Brâncoveanu da Şerban Cantacuzino II Măgureanu (1685–1710).” In Brâncoveanu 300: Epoca brâncoveneasca la orizontul modernităţii româneşti, eds. , , Florentina Niţu and Şarolta Solcan Radu Nedici 157– 175. Bucureşti: Editura Universităţii din Bucureşti, . 2016
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. “ Ursprung, Daniel Raumvorstellungen und Landesbewusstsein: Die Walachei als Name und Raumkonzept im historischen Wandel.” In Das Südosteuropa der Regionen, edited by , and Oliver Jens Schmitt Michael Metzeltin 473– 549. Wien: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, . 2015
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, ed. Stephan Gerlachs deß Aeltern Tage-Buch der von zween glorwürdigsten römischen Kaysern, Maximiliano und Rudolpho, beyderseits den Andern dieses Nahmens an die ottomanische Pforte zu Constantinopel abgefertigten […]. Gerlach, Samuel Frankfurt am Mayn: Zunner, . 1674
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Siebenbürgische Chronik des Schässburger Stadtschreibers Georg Kraus. 1608–1665. Wien: Ausschusse des Vereines für Siebenbürgische Landeskunde, 1864.
The Travels of Macarius, Patriarch of Antioch: Written by His Attendant Archdeacon Paul of Aleppo, in Arabic. Translated by F.C. Belfour and A.M. Oxon. Vol. 1. London, 1836.
Even in the sixteenth and seventeenth century the term Wallachia often referred both to Ungro-Wallachia and Moldo-Wallachia. A letter sent to Maximillian II by Christoph Teuffenpach is relevant in this sense; Teuffenpach wrote that the sultan flung both Wallachias (“der Türkisch Kayser habe beiden Walacheien aufboten”); see Andrei Veress, Documente privitoare la istoria Ardealului, Moldovei şi Ţării-Române (Bucureşti, 1930), 2:95. The title of the metropolitan preserved part of this denomination: Metropolitan of Ungro-Wallachia. In the same way, in Poland the denomination “Wołoszczyzna” referred to both Wallachias; Daniel Ursprung, “Raumvorstellungen und Landesbewusstsein: Die Walachei als Name und Raumkonzept im historischen Wandel,” in Das Südosteuropa der Regionen, eds. Oliver Jens Schmitt and Michael Metzeltin (Wien: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, 2015), 522.
Corneliu Dima-Drăgan, Biblioteca unui umanist român, Constantin Cantacuzino Stolnicul (Bucureşti: Comitetul de Stat pentru Cultură și Artă, Consiliul Așezămintelor Culturale, 1967), 18–25.
For further examples, see Corina Popa, “Elemente de morfologie otomană în arta monumentală din Ţara Românească (secolele XVI–XVII),” Buletinul Comisiei Monumentelor Istorice 3, nr. 2 (1992): 45–53.
The family adapted later the Latinized form of the Greek surname Kantakouzenos.
Samuel Gerlach, ed., Stephan Gerlachs deß Aeltern Tage-Buch der von zween glorwürdigsten römischen Kaysern, Maximiliano und Rudolpho, beyderseits den Andern dieses Nahmens an die ottomanische Pforte zu Constantinopel abgefertigten […] (Frankfurt am Mayn: Zunner, 1674), 64.
“Wird Herr über Balachia und Bogdania”; Gerlach, Stephan Gerlachs deß Aeltern Tage-Buch, 260.
Tom Papademetriou, Render unto the Sultan: Power, Authority, and the Greek Orthodox Church in the Early Ottoman Centuries (New York: Oxford University Press, 2015), 200.
Nicolae Iorga, Byzance après Byzance: Continuation de l’histoire de la vie byzantine (Bucarest: L’Institut d’Étude Byzantine, 1935), 116.
Nicolae Iorga, Despre Cantacuzini. Studii istorice basate în parte pe documentele inedite din arhiva D-lui G. Gr. Cantacuzino (Bucureşti: Institutul de Arte Grafice şi Editură “Minerva,” 1902), 47.
Nicolae Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători în Ţara Românească şi Moldova. Sec. XIV–XVII (Bucureşti: Editura enciclopedică română, 1971), 361.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 363.
“care capete de-abea de au avut cîndva această ţar, sau de va mai avea”; Miron Costin, “Letopiseţulu Ţării Moldovei de la Aaron vodă încoace (…)” in Opere, ed. P.P. Panaitescu (Bucureşti: Editura de Stat pentru Literatură şi Artă, 1958), 121.
The Dormition of the Virgin Church, known as Tălpălarior Church.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 361.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 135.
Sometimes her name is mentioned in the documents as Elina.
Călin Hoinărescu, “Ctitoriile cantacuzine din Prahova—Premisă fundamentală a arhitecturii brîncoveneşti,” Revista muzeelor si monumentelor—Monumente istorice şi de artă 16, no. 1 (1985): 55.
Hoinărescu, “Ctitoriile cantacuzine,” 58–59.
The Travels of Macarius, Patriarch of Antioch: Written by His Attendant Archdeacon Paul of Aleppo, in Arabic, trans. F.C. Belfour and A.M. Oxon (London, 1836), 1:160.
Travels of Macarius, 157–58.
“Aus dem alten griechischen Kaysergeschlecht der Kantakuziner”; Gerlach, Stephan Gerlachs deß Aeltern Tage- Buch, 60.
“Dem Costandin Postelnic, ein alter, greiser undt sehr verständiger Herr, so von dess Constantini keyssers Familii, welcher Constantinopol gebawet gewesen”; Siebenbürgische Chronik des Schässburger Stadtschreibers Georg Kraus. 1608–1665. (Wien: Ausschusse des Vereines für Siebenbürgische Landeskunde, 1864) 2:372.
It is kept today in the collection of the National Museum of Arts of Romania, Bucharest.
Corina Nicolescu, Argintăria laică şi religioasă în Ţările Române (sec. XIV–XIX) (Bucureşti: Muzeul de Artă al Republicii Socialiste România, 1968), 289.
Voivode Radu Şerban.
Voivode Constantin Şerban.
The defunct voivode was his father-in-law, and Voivode Constantin Şerban was his illegitimate son, so he could be considered a brother-in-law. Ancoutza, as daughter of the defunct voivode, was his sister-in-law, Elina his wife, and Dumitraşcu was the father of her daughter’s husband, Pană Filipescu; Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 177–78. And Istrate was the husband of Ancoutza’s daughter; Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 206.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 136.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 289.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 135.
Siebenbürgische Chronik, 2: 372.
Iorga, Despre Cantacuzini, 58.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 137–39.
Her second husband was Radu Creţulescu, the great logothete.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 136.
Iorga, Despre Cantacuzini, 80.
Del Chiaro, Anton Maria, Istoria delle moderne rivoluzioni della Valachia: Con la descrizione del paese, natura, costumi, riti e religione degli abitanti (Venezia: Antonio Bortoli, 1718), 125.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 137–38.
A photo of the page with the record in the matricola was published in Radu Ştefan Ciobanu, Pe urmele stolnicului Constantin Cantacuzino (Bucureşti: Editura Sport Turism, 1982).
Del Chiaro, Istoria, 128.
Del Chiaro, Istoria, 130–31.
Iorga, Despre Cantacuzini, 124–25.
Del Chiaro relates a (probably fictious) scene: The sultan, seeing him from the window of his residence in Adrianople, how briskly he got on the horse, made a remark to the vizir about the resemblance between him and his ancestor, calling him “Cantacusin Saitàn Ogulù,”; Istoria, 132.
Gerlach, Stephan Gerlachs deß Aeltern Tage-Buch, 267 (quoted after Papademetriou, Render unto, 206).
Ionescu, G.M., Istoria Cotrocenilor, Lupescilor (Sf. Elefterie) și Grozăvescilor (Bucuresci: Tipografia şi Fonderia de Litere Thoma Basilescu, 1902).
George Potra, Istoricul hanurilor bucureştene (Bucureşti: Editura Ştiinţifică şi Enciclopedică, 1985), 35–36.
Potra, Istoricul hanurilor, 35–36.
Potra, Istoricul hanurilor, 35.
The Entry of the Virgin into the Temple Church, called “Doamnei” (Lady’s) Church.
Constantin was the patron of the St. Stephen Church in Târgovişte, which was called the “Stolnik’s” church because at that time he served as stolnik.
Gheorghe Brancovici, Cronica românească, eds. Damaschin Mioc and Marieta Adam-Chiper (Bucureşti: Editura Academiei Republicii Socialiste România, 1987), 74.
Sinaia, Romania. The village was named after the skete.
Candid C. Mușlea, Biserica Sf. Nicolae din Șcheii- Brașovului (Brașov: Institutul de Arte Grafice “ASTRA,” 1943), 1:381, 385.
Elisabeta Negrău, “Hramul vechiului paraclis al mănăstirii Comana. Note privind cultul sfinţilor Eftimie şi Spiridon în Ţările Române (sec. XVII–XVIII.),” Studii şi Materiale de Istorie Medie 32 (2014): 363.
“Introdusse nella sua Corte un modo di vivere più pulito, e civile; giacchè sino a quel tempo non era stato in uso l’adoperar vassellami di argento, spezialmente nella Mensa”; Del Chiaro, Istoria, 144.
It is kept today in the collection of the National Museum of Arts of Romania, Bucharest.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 140.
Del Chiaro, Istoria, 124.
Corina Nicolescu published an image of it in 1963, following studies by Viktor Roth and Theodora Voinescu, and she identified the maker master as EV. Roth found the mark on a standing cup from Holzmengen (Holcmány; Hosman) and published it in 1912, mentioning it as a mark formed from the letters E and V. Later he also published the image of the mark, upon which Theodora Voinescu and Corina Nicolescu based their identification of the same mark on silverworks commissioned by the Cantacuzini. See Corina Nicolescu, “Die Rolle der siebenbürgische Goldschmiede in der Entwicklung der Goldschmiedekunst der rumänischen Länder im 16. und 17. Jahrhunderts,” Forschungen zur Volks- und Landeskunde 6 (1963): nr. 6., fig. 11; Theodora Voinescu, “Din legăturile artistice ale Ţării Româneşti cu Transilvania (Meşteri argintari),” Studii şi cercetări de istoria artei 3, nos. 1–2 (1956): 82–88; Viktor Roth, “Az egyházi kehely történeti fejlődése Erdélyben,” Archeológiai Értesítő 32 (1912): 91–132; Kunstdenkmäler aus den sächsischen Kirchen Siebenbürgens. Goldschmiedearbeiten (Hermannstadt: Drotleff, 1922), 177.
It is kept today at St. Nicholas Church, Braşov.
Corina Nicolescu, Biserica Sf. Nicolae din Şcheii Braşovului (Bucureşti: Editura Meridiane, 1967), 28.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 143.
Dan Ionescu, “Ideal and Representation: The Ideal of the Restoration of the Byzantine Empire during the Reign of Şerban Cantacuzino (1678–1788),” Revue d’Études Sud-Est Européennes 12 (1974): 523, 527.
On the katzi from Cotroceni monastery kept at the National Museum of Arts in Bucharest appears as part of the inscription with Cyrillic letters: “(...)IO SERBANU CATACUZINO BASARABU (...)” (“ІѠШЄРБАNЬКА ТАКѴЗУNОБАСАPБЬ”)
Constantin Rezachevici, “Cum a apărut numele dinastic Basarab şi cum l-a adoptat Matei Vodă,” Analele Universităţii Craiova. Seria Istorie (2005), 11.
It is kept today in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.
The Islamic form of the basin and its significance were clarified for me by András Riedelmayer during the research seminar “From Riverbed to Seashore” led by Alina Payne at Harvard University.
Tihamér Gyárfás, A brassai ötvösség története (Brassó: n.p., 1912), 125.
It is kept today in the collection of the Brukenthal Museum, Sibiu.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 27.
Peter Schnell, senior and junior, in 1615 and in 1637; Gyárfás Tihamér, “A nagyszebeni ötvösök mesterjegytáblája,” Archeológiai Értesítő 30 (1910): 415.
Daniela Dâmboiu, Breasla aurarilor din Sibiu între secolele XVI–XVII (Sibiu/Hermannstadt: Altip, 2008), 215.
It is the reason why, for researchers, this master remained anonymous for a long time. Other than the standing cup from Holzmengen, works from his early period are not known. A parcel-gilt tankard bearing his mark was auctioned by Sotheby’s in 1990 and arrived in the collection of Nicholas M. Salgo, while a bowl (modified later and mounted on an oval base), chased with mythological scenes and bearing his mark, was auctioned by Sotheby’s in 2008; see Judit H. Kolba, Hungarian Silver: The Nicholas M. Salgo Collection (Cambridge: Thomas Heneage, 1997), 59 (nr. 37); “A Continental Silver-Gilt Figural Tazza,” Sotheby’s, New York, October 17, 2008, lot 60:
Dâmboiu, Breasla, 215.
Dâmboiu, Breasla, 216.
There is a copper ewer and basin of this type in the collection of the Hurezi monastery.
Iulius Bielz, Arta aurarilor saşi din Transilvania (Bucureşti: Editura de Stat pentru Literatură şi Artă, 1957), 24.
It is kept today in the Library of the Brukenthal Museum, Sibiu.
Ştefan Lemny, Cantemireştii. Aventura europeană a unei familii princiare din secolul al XVIII-lea, trans. Magda Jeanrenaud (Iaşi: Polirom, 2010), 52.
Lemny, Cantemireştii, 77.
Accession nr: 2005.62.1, 2005.62.2. According to the online database of the Metropolitan Museum of Arts, New York,
Mentioned as EV master. Nicolescu, Argintăria, 87.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 298–99.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 300.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 302.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 299.
Yota Ikonomaki-Papadopoulos, “Book Cover ‘by the Hand of Loukas of Hungary-Wallachia’ and ‘Iakovos, Hieromonk of Simonopetra,’” in Treasures of Mount Athos, ed. A.A. Karakatsanis (Thessaloniki: Ministry of Culture, Museum of Byzantine Culture, 1997), 370–71.
Gyárfás, A brassai, 116. Tihamér Gyárfás has not published Valentin Igell’s mark, but the analysis of the guild records and the data published by Gyárfás revealed that the only master whose initials match the letters from the mark in the period under discussion is Valentin Igell (he was active as a goldsmith master between 1666 and 1691).
Ikonomaki-Papadopoulos, “Book Cover,” 370–71.
The Cotroceni monastery founded by him had close relations with Mount Athos (later, in 1682 the monastery was offered to the Mount Athos monasteries).
Valentin’s Saxon nickname.
Ikonomaki-Papadopoulos, “Book Cover,” 371.
Marinescu, Adrian, “Legături ale domnitorilor români cu Sinaiul,” Anuarul Facultăţii de Teologie Ortodoxă “Patriarhul Justinian” 7 (2007): 236.
Istoria Țării Romînești. 1290–1690. Letopisețul Cantacuzinesc, eds. C. Grecescu and D. Simonescu (Bucureşti: n.p., 1960), 180.
Virgil Cândea, Mărturii româneşti peste hotare. Creaţii româneşti şi izvoare despre români in colecţii din străinătate (Bucureşti: Editura Biblioteca Bucureştilor, 2011), 3:43.
Ionescu, “Ideal and Representation,” 532.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 210.
Corina Popa, “Model şi variante în argintăria brâncovenească,” Studii şi Cercetări de Istoria Artei (Seria Artă Plastică) 36 (1989): 34.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 140.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 140.
Dâmboiu, Breasla, 191.
Carmen Tănăsoiu, “Odoarele Hureziului,” Ctitorii brâncoveneşti. Elemente de artă eclesială medievală (Bucureşti: Editura Cuvântul Vieţii, 2014), 208.
Gyárfás, A brassai ötvösség, 116.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 247–48. (According to the catalogue the two lamps are punched with his mark, and another two are attributed to him.)
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 176–77.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 235.
Gyárfás, A brassai ötvösség, 112.
Tănăsoiu, Odoarele, 208.
Carmen Tănăsoiu attracted my attention to these interesting and meaningful details (Şerban’s coat of arms appears on the lamp, but in the inscription Constantin Brancovan is mentioned as the donor) during my research in the collections of National Museum of Arts of Romania, Bucharest.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 249–50.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 138.
Mariana Lazăr, “Contextul finalului domniei lui Şerban Cantacuzino şi situaţia averii sale,” Studii şi Materiale de Istorie Medie 33 (2015): 361.
It is still called the “Doamnei” Church (Lady’s church).
Lazăr, Mariana, O biserică bucureşteană, metoh al mănăstirii Cotroceni,
Ana Maria Musicescu, Broderia veche românească (Bucureşti: Editura Meridiane, 1985), 24.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 248–49.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 113.
It is kept at the Vatopaidi monastery on Mount Athos.
Anna Ballian, “Vatopaidi Monastery—Artworks from Moldavia and Wallachia of the 17th-Early 18th centuries,” www. pemptousia.com (accessed January 10, 2016).
Ballian, “Vatopaidi Monastery.”
Viorica Guy Marica, Sebastian Hann (Bukarest: Editura Fundaţiei Culturale Române, 1998), 189.
Stoicescu, Dicţionar al marilor dregători, 117.
Negrău, Hramul, 360.
The artophorion is currently on display in the National Museum of Arts of Romania in Bucharest. The mark was discussed recently by Anita Paolicchi, see “Argenteria veneziana acquistata al tempo di Constantin Brâncoveanu da Şerban Cantacuzino II Măgureanu (1685–1710),” in Brâncoveanu 300: Epoca brâncoveneasca la orizontul modernităţii româneşti, eds. Florentina Niţu, Şarolta Solcan and Radu Nedici (Bucureşti: Editura Universităţii din Bucureşti, 2016), 161.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 179.
In the period under discussion several analogies are known in the regions south to the Danube: the artophorion dedicated by Neopytos, metropolitan of Adrianople, to his cathedral church (kept at the Museum of Byzantine and Christian Art, Athens), or the artophorion dedicated by Hegumen Damascene to the Bachkovo monastery.
Nicolescu, Argintăria, 154–56.
Valentina-Cristina Sandu, Restituiri istorice. O anaforniţă şi o piatră de mormânt cantacuzină de la biserica Adormirii din Râmnicu Sărat,
Mariana Lazăr, “Politica ctitoricească a lui Ştefan Cantacuzino, domn al Ţări Româneşti (1714–1716),” Revista istorică 27, nos. 5–6 (2016): 444.
Del Chiaro, Istoria, 12.
Bálint Ágnes Ziegler, “A brassói evangélikus főtemplom (Fekete Templom) 18. századi újjáépítése. Felekezeti, politikai, rendi csoportidentitás kifejeződése egy újjászülető épületben” (PhD diss., Eötvös Loránd University, 2012), 192–93.