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Baptismal font

  • Baptismal font © Ministerio de Cultura

    Baptismal font © Ministerio de Cultura



Rites, worship and beliefs



Cultural background


Original title

Pila bautismal
Guadalajara Museum
Guadalajara, Castile-La Mancha

This piece is one of the best examples of sculpted art from the Romanesque period in the province of Guadalajara.

Despite its large size, the base of this baptismal font has an ornamental border with a reticular diamond pattern and the whole of the outer surface is decorated with oblique marks and three carved crosses.

Its type and decoration –and particularly the crosses inside circles in the form of four-petalled flowers– enable it to be dated to between the 13th and 14th centuries. The lines of abrasion that can be seen on the outside of the font and the hole bored through the bottom indicate that it may have ended its life as a mill wheel. This hypothesis is also borne out by the fact that it was found on the banks of the Tagus river, perhaps having been used in a watermill.

Details of the work

From Illana (Guadalajara)

Baptismal font

Height = 60 cm; Diameter = 115 cm




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