Seal of Francesco Cardinal Gonzaga.
113 x 76 mm. Vesica-shaped red wax seal. Stored in a paper box.
A cardinal's pointed oval seal of the 'aedicula' type often seen from the mid-15th century onwards: three figures with the Virgin Mary and the Infant Jesus, shown within elaborate Renaissance architecture (a single-compartment aedicula framed by columns; the Gothic screenwork canopies of the earlier Gothic fashion have here been replaced by a classical pediment). The seal corresponds precisely to the specimen preserved in the Upper Austrian Archives, Gleink, Urk. 1467 X 08; No. 14.
Cardinal Francesco Gonzaga served during the reigns of Popes Pius II, Paul II and Sixtus IV. The classical design of his seal ties in with his patronage of the arts and his penchant for collecting antiquities.
Lower point of the seal chipped with some loss to the coat of arms, otherwise well preserved.