Online Lecture: ‘On the Trail of the Lonesome Nun: Giusto de’ Menabuoi’s London Triptych’, with Laura Jacobus, Murray Research Seminar at Birkbeck, 26 January 2021, 16:50-18:30 (GMT)

Giusto de’ Menabuoi’s little triptych in the National Gallery is signed and dated. With its moveable wings and clearly identifiable subject matter it might seem to be, literally, an open and shut case. However, there is no consensus as to its origins and original ownership, and its purpose is only vaguely understood as ‘devotional’. This paper advances the idea that it was made for a young girl upon her becoming a nun. With this in mind, new perspectives on the triptych can be considered. Intended to serve the new nun in her devotions for her entire life it may nevertheless have held special resonances for her as a child. We can understand it as a memento of family and of a childhood home; as a prize for achievement on a rite of passage; as a prompt to do well in her entrance exams; even as a holy plaything or ‘doll’s chapel’.

Laura Jacobus is a retired Senior Lecturer at Birkbeck, and organizer of the Murray Seminars on Medieval and Renaissance Art .

Register via the official event page here:


Published by charlottecook

Charlotte Cook graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor’s degree in European History from Washington & Lee University in 2019. In 2020 she received her Master’s degree in History of Art from the Courtauld Institute of Art, earning the classification of Merit. Her research explores questions of royal patronage, both by and in honor of rulers, in fourteenth- and fifteenth-century England. She has worked as a researcher and collections assistant at several museums and galleries, and plans to begin her PhD in the autumn of 2022.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: