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Haverford College
Quaker and Special Collections

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Current Exhibition


Lasting Impressions: Monumental Brass Rubbings

October 25, 2013 - January 10, 2014



upcoming exhibit image

Figural brasses, produced in large numbers from the 13th through the 17th centuries as funerary monuments, are a fascinating window into the social and religious worlds of those eras. Making rubbings of monumental brasses represents a popular, yet rigorous pastime. Haverford College's collection of rubbing was done in England and Germany during the early 1970s by Maxine and David Cook, class of 1964.

The Lasting Impressions exhibition explores three major functions of brasses as represented in the rubbings: to elicit prayers for the soul of the deceased, to preserve familial memory, and, finally, to attest to the person’s social status and accomplishments. Today the brasses introduce us to noble women, knights, children, and others whose lives illuminate the past as well as give meaning to the present.

The exhibit begins from Magill Library's Sharpless Gallery and includes more than 20 brass rubbings displayed in various sites around campus.

Presented by the Haverford College Libraries and the John P. Chesick Scholars Program.