Diana and Stag Automaton

Joachim Friesabout 1610 - 1620

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Elaborate silver automata were among the most marvelous works of art in German princely collections. The south German city of Augsburg specialized in such courtly drinking amusements during the seventeenth century. The base of this automaton contained a wind-up mechanism that moved it across the table. Once it came to a standstill, the diner closest to it removed the stag's head and drank the wine from the body.

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  • Title: Diana and Stag Automaton
  • Date Created: about 1610 - 1620
  • Physical Dimensions: w243 x h330 mm
  • Type: Silver
  • Rights: Museum purchase with funds donated anonymously and the William Francis Warden Fund, Frank B. Bemis Fund, Mary S. and Edward Jackson Holmes Fund, John Lowell Gardner Fund, and by exchange from the Bequest of William A. Coolidge. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. All Rights Reserved.
  • External Link: http://www.mfa.org/collections/object/diana-and-stag-automaton-452791
  • Medium: Cast and chased silver, partially gilded and painted with translucent lacquers
  • Marked by: Joachim Fries