Medieval Memoria Online

Description - Memorial Object

Tomb monument of Guy van Avesnes

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MeMO memorial object ID and name
MeMO memorial object ID 2941
Name Tomb monument of Guy van Avesnes
Holding institution(s)
Holding institution(s)
  • Utrecht, Domkerk (St. Maartenskerk)
Category
Type Tomb monument, tomb slab or floor slab (physical object)
Classification Tomb monument
Short description Stone chest tomb: moulded base; friezes showing fourteen pleurants in relief within pointed arches (foot end and right side); gisant of a bishop under a baldachin, flanked by Gothic architecture (cover); remnants of a wall sculpture (above head end)
Remarks about category
General date
General date 1300-1350
Artist(s)
Artist(s)
Original institution(s)
Original institution [21] St. Maartenskerk (Domkerk) (St Martin´s Church (Dom Cathedral)), Utrecht
Arguments
  • the memorial object is still in the original institution
  • based on research (literature, archival or archaeological research)
Specification Guy van Avesnes was bishop of Utrecht. This church was the episcopal see.
Still in original institution? yes
Location inside the institution
In situ? yes
(Probable) original location
  • in a chapel
Argumentation
Related memorial objects in the same institution
Additional remarks (original location)
Additional remarks The tomb monument has always been located in the 'kapel van Avesnes' (Avesnes chapel), south-west corner, against the west wall (head facing east)
Memorial piece
Function
Specification
Additional remarks
Memorial monument or floor slab
Function liturgical/religious
Grave findings Objects found during the restoration of the vault in 1921: a silk bishop's shoe, a ring, fragments of decorations of bishop's clothing, fragments of twill with the depiction of a winged lion, fragments of a pair of knitted bishop's gloves, a chalice and paten. These grave gifts are now part of the collection of the Centraal Museum in Utrecht.
Additional remarks The type of grave is unclear: fellow-bishops of Guy van Avesnes may also have been buried in the tomb. Literature is ambiguous on this matter.
Original function
Change in function
Remarks about function
Name Guy van Avesnes
Specification
Members of the commemorated party
Commemorated person(s)
  • [5591] Guy van Avesnes (male)
Commemorated institution(s)
Relation between commemorated persons no relation (only one person mentioned/depicted)
Relation specification
Additional remarks
Name
Composition of the commissioning party
Specification
Members of the commissioning party
Commissioning person(s)
Commissioning Institution(s)
Relation between commissioning party and commemorated party
Relation specification
Additional remarks
Material(s)
  • stone
Specification Black limestone, probably from Tournai (Doornik) in the province of Hainaut. The monument of Guy van Avesnes shows stylistic similarities with black limestone tomb monuments in Hainaut and the Bishopric of Utrecht which all were made in Tournai workshops. The Avesnes family had strong ties to Hainaut.
Traces of polychromy?
Reuse of older objects
Dimensions (cm)
Height x width x depth 120 x 135 x 290
Completeness Incomplete: the vestments of the bishop were originally inlaid with (semi-)precious stones and/or enamel. The inlay is now missing, as well as the bishop's staff, the inscription and possible coats of arms. The heads of the pleurants have been hacked away. Much of the wall sculpture has disappeared; only a trefoil arch remains.
Condition The tomb monument was badly damaged during the "Beeldenstorm" (iconoclastic outbreak) of 1580. It is very well possible that the monument suffered further damage from vandalism in the following centuries.
Conservation The tomb monument was restored in 1920 and conserved in 1960. Missing parts have not been filled/completed.
Technical research
Specification (technical research)
Alterations
Alterations
Specification
Additional remarks Originally, the chest tomb was probably inscribed with enamelled letters. The cover of the tomb has moulded edges; the tomb has a moulded base.
Provenance
Provenance The monument has been in the church of old
Marks of ownership
Type(s) of mark(s) of ownership
Specification
  • Bloys van Treslong Prins, P.C., Genealogische en heraldische gedenkwaardigheden in en uit de provincie Utrecht (Utrecht 1919), 211; no. 63
  • Borst, P., et al., Graven en begraven in de Dom van Utrecht (Bunnik 1997), 25-26, 65-66; 16
  • Buchelius, A. , Monumenta passim in templis ac monasteriis Traiectinae urbis atque agri inventa (Utrecht ), 28; fol. 16v
  • Frequin, S., A Voice from the Grave: the Tomb of Guy of Avesnes in Saint-Martin’s Cathedral in Utrecht, in: Egmond, A.J. van; Chavannes-Mazel, C.A., Medieval art in the Northern Netherlands before Van Eyck. New facts and features (Utrecht 2014), 160-171
  • Groot, A. de, De Dom van Utrecht in de zestiende eeuw. Inrichting, decoratie en gebruik van de katholieke kathedraal (Amsterdam 2011), 117, 276, 395, 397; F
  • Haslinghuis, E.J.; Peeters, C.J.A.C., De Nederlandse Monumenten van Geschiedenis en Kunst, dl. II, De provincie Utrecht, Eerste stuk, De gemeente Utrecht, Tweede aflevering, De Dom van Utrecht ('s-Gravenhage 1965), 367-368; 1
Other documentation
RCE: object nos. 3.814, 18.008 and 42.124; SKKN: inv. no. 967-48, photo nos. 967-48_1 and 967-48_2
Additional remarks
Additional remarks • This is the oldest sepulchral monument in the Utrecht St. Maartenskerk/Domkerk (St Martin's Church/Dom Church). Furthermore, it is the only remaining bishop's tomb in the church; the tomb monument of bishop Jan van Arkel (d. 1378) - which was stylistically related to that of Guy van Avesnes - was already damaged and subsequently destroyed in the 16th and 17th century. • The monument of Guy van Avesnes is located in a chapel that was originally dedicated to SS Margaret, Laurence and Barbara. It was named after the bishop later on (Avesnes chapel). • One side of the chest tomb is not visible, namely the head end: this side is placed against the west wall of the chapel.

Chest tomb: tomb cover of [2941] Tomb monument of Guy van Avesnes

Indication of part
Indication of part Chest tomb: tomb cover
Short description
Short description Gisant of a bishop under a baldachin, flanked by pilasters which are surmounted by Gothic gables, animals below the bishop's feet
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth
Date
Year 1317
Specified date
Argumentation
  • date of death (from other sources)
Specification date of death of Guy van Avesnes
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Utrecht, Domkerk (St. Maartenskerk)
Collection
Collection identifier
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution The tomb monument is located in the 'kapel van Avesnes' (Avesnes chapel), south-west corner, against the west wall
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Filiation
Filiation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks The bishop faces east: he will rise again at dawn on Judgement Day

Upper structure (against the wall) of [2941] Tomb monument of Guy van Avesnes

Indication of part
Indication of part Upper structure (against the wall)
Short description
Short description Remnants of a sculpture on the west wall
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth
Date
Year 1317
Specified date
Argumentation
  • date of death (from other sources)
Specification date of death of Guy van Avesnes
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Utrecht, Domkerk (St. Maartenskerk)
Collection
Collection identifier
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution The tomb monument is located in the 'kapel van Avesnes' (Avesnes chapel), south-west corner, against the west wall
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Filiation
Filiation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Chest tomb: right side of [2941] Tomb monument of Guy van Avesnes

Indication of part
Indication of part Chest tomb: right side
Short description
Short description Frieze showing ten pleurants in relief within pointed arches
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth
Date
Year 1317
Specified date
Argumentation
  • date of death (from other sources)
Specification date of death of Guy van Avesnes
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Utrecht, Domkerk (St. Maartenskerk)
Collection
Collection identifier
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution The tomb monument is located in the 'kapel van Avesnes' (Avesnes chapel), south-west corner, against the west wall
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Filiation
Filiation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Chest tomb: foot-end of [2941] Tomb monument of Guy van Avesnes

Indication of part
Indication of part Chest tomb: foot-end
Short description
Short description Frieze showing four pleurants in relief within pointed arches
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth
Date
Year 1317
Specified date
Argumentation
  • date of death (from other sources)
Specification date of death of Guy van Avesnes
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Utrecht, Domkerk (St. Maartenskerk)
Collection
Collection identifier
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution The tomb monument is located in the 'kapel van Avesnes' (Avesnes chapel), south-west corner, against the west wall
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Filiation
Filiation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Chest tomb: left side of [2941] Tomb monument of Guy van Avesnes

Indication of part
Indication of part Chest tomb: left side
Short description
Short description Not properly visible: this side is too close to the south wall
Dimensions (cm)
Height x Width x Depth
Date
Year 1317
Specified date
Argumentation
  • date of death (from other sources)
Specification date of death of Guy van Avesnes
Additional remarks
Holding institution
Holding institution Utrecht, Domkerk (St. Maartenskerk)
Collection
Collection identifier
Online description link
Alternative or previous collections
Alternative of previous identifiers
Accessibility
Remarks about holding institution The tomb monument is located in the 'kapel van Avesnes' (Avesnes chapel), south-west corner, against the west wall
Contract
Contract
Artist(s)
Filiation
Filiation
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Portraits

Indication of part
Indication of part Chest tomb: tomb cover
Place of the portrait
Place of the portrait on the tomb cover
Portrait of
Name Guy van Avesnes
Sex male
Argumentation
  • based on literature or archival research
Specification
Portrait — portraiture
Physical state of the portrayed person cannot be determined
Argumentation
Specification
Posture recumbent
Manner of portrayal Posture: combination of standing and recumbent. Due to damages, it is not possible to determine whether the eyes of the bishop are open or closed. He has his arms crossed on his chest; his head rests on a pillow.
Portrait — clothing, attributes and insignia
Clothing
Type of clothing clothes of an ecclesiastical office holder
Short description episcopal vestments: amict, alb, dalmatic, chasuble and cope
Attributes
Attributes
  • (ecclesiastical) vestments
  • gloves
Specification mitre and gloves
Insignia
Insignia
  • insignia
Specification bishop's ring (right hand)
Remarks about clothing
Additional remarks The bishop's staff is missing

Decorations

Indication of part
Indication of the part Chest tomb: tomb cover
Type(s) of decoration(s)
Type(s) of decoration(s)
  • architectural decorations
  • rosettes
  • geometric patterns
Description of the decoration(s)
Description of the decoration(s) The sides of the cover show two pairs of pilasters which are decorated with rosettes; each pair of pilasters is surmounted by a Gothic gable with a pointed arch, finials, crockets and tracery.
Depicted allegories
Depicted allegories
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Indication of part
Indication of the part Chest tomb: tomb cover
Type(s) of decoration(s)
Type(s) of decoration(s)
  • architectural decorations
  • geometric patterns
Description of the decoration(s)
Description of the decoration(s) The baldachin has the shape of half a hexagon. It is decorated with Gothic gables and tracery. Quatrefoil frieze at the top of the baldachin.
Depicted allegories
Depicted allegories
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Indication of part
Indication of the part Chest tomb: tomb cover
Type(s) of decoration(s)
Type(s) of decoration(s)
  • mythical figures and/or creatures
Description of the decoration(s)
Description of the decoration(s) Remnants of two dragon-like animals (dragons, snakes or basilisks) below the feet of the bishop.
Depicted allegories
Depicted allegories
Additional remarks
Additional remarks Reference to Psalm 91:13: "Thou shalt walk upon the asp and the basilisk: and thou shalt trample under foot the lion and the dragon".
Indication of part
Indication of the part Upper structure (against the wall)
Type(s) of decoration(s)
Type(s) of decoration(s)
  • architectural decorations
Description of the decoration(s)
Description of the decoration(s) Remnants of a wall sculpture: a Gothic gable with crockets and a finial with, on both sides, pinnacles. A pointed arch and trefoil arch within the gable. The centre of the wall sculpture shows the dent of a small statue and a hook.
Depicted allegories
Depicted allegories
Additional remarks
Additional remarks The greater part of the sculpture is missing.
Indication of part
Indication of the part Chest tomb: right side
Type(s) of decoration(s)
Type(s) of decoration(s)
  • human figures (incl. skeletons and skulls)
  • architectural decorations
  • rosettes
Description of the decoration(s)
Description of the decoration(s) Frieze of pointed arches with a trefoil motif. The tops of the arches show crockets and finials. The pilasters of the arches are decorated with rosettes. Ten pleurants (in relief) within the arches, taking up different poses and wearing garments in different lengths.
Depicted allegories
Depicted allegories
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
Indication of part
Indication of the part Chest tomb: foot-end
Type(s) of decoration(s)
Type(s) of decoration(s)
  • human figures (incl. skeletons and skulls)
  • architectural decorations
  • rosettes
Description of the decoration(s)
Description of the decoration(s) Frieze of pointed arches with a trefoil motif. The tops of the arches show crockets and finials. The pilasters of the arches are decorated with rosettes. Four pleurants (in relief) within the arches, taking up different poses and wearing garments in different lengths.
Depicted allegories
Depicted allegories
Additional remarks
Additional remarks

Person Description

Personal identification number
Personal identification number 5591
Personal details
Name Guy van Avesnes
Sex male
Year/date of birth 1253
Year/date of death 1317
Additional remarks Variations on his first name: Gwijde, Guido. Born in Valenciennes, descendant of the House of Avesnes, which produced a number of Counts of Hainaut. Son of Jan van Avesnes, Count of Hainaut, and Aleid van Holland, whose father was Count of Holland. Brother of Jan II van Avesnes, Count of Hainaut, Holland and Zeeland. Guy van Avesnes was elected 42nd bishop of Utrecht on 5 August 1301. In 1304 he weakened his brother’s position by leading an offensive of Flemish troops which occupied Holland. During this offensive, Guy van Avesnes was shortly taken captive on the island of Duiveland. The village of Amsterdam was given its city rights by Guy van Avesnes in 1506. He was not officially recognized as bishop by the worldly authorities until 1309, when he received royal priviliges from the king of the Holy Roman Empire. In 1311, he moved to Avignon and attended the first Council of Vienne. During the bishop’s stay abroad, the church was governed by suffragan bishops and the chapters. In 1517, Guy van Avesnes returned to Utrecht, where he died in May of that year. He was buried in the St. Maartenskerk/Domkerk (St Martin’s Church/Dom Church) in Utrecht. Guy van Avesnes fathered at least two illegitimate children, daughters Maria and Aleid.
Social standing
Status secular clergy
Arguments
  • identification of the person (portrayed, mentioned in text or owning the coat of arms)
  • according to literature
Specification
Member of a convent
Religious order
Specification
Member of secular clergy
Type of secular clergy bishop
Specification bishop of Utrecht, 1301-1317
Additional remarks
Additional remarks
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