Medallions by Augustus Saint-Gaudens (American, Dublin 1848–1907 Cornish, New Hampshire)
Made in New York, New York, United States
33 1/2 x 14 x 11 5/16 in. (85.1 x 35.6 x 28.7 cm); Diam. 11 5/16 in. (28.7cm); 452 oz. 16 dwt. (14084.2 g)
Gift of William Cullen Bryant, 1877
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 706
To honor the poet William Cullen Bryant on his eightieth birthday, in November 1874, a group of his friends commissioned this vessel fashioned in the form of a Greek vase and richly ornamented with symbolic motifs. The fretwork is composed of American flora, in particular, apple blossoms and branches which represent the beauty and wholesome quality of Bryant's poetry. The Renaissance-revival medallions are scenes alluding to Bryant's life and works. "Truth crushed to earth shall rise again" (a famous line from his poetry) is inlaid in gold around the neck of the vase.
Signature: [on front]: Eugene J. Soligny
Inscription: [around neck in inlaid gold]: Truth crushed to earth shall rise again
Marking: [on foot]: TIFFANY & CO. UNION SQUARE NEW YORK / DESIGN PATENT, MAY 1875 [on edge of base]: TIFFANY & Co MAKERS.
William Cullen Bryant, Roslyn, New York, until 1877.