The Mainz Treasure: An Art Mystery from the Time of the Kingdom of Germany


For the first time in a quarter century the Kunstgewerbemuseum of the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin will once again send its most important ensemble of medieval gold jewellery, which became world-famous as the supposed ‘jewellery of Empress Gisela’ to another museum on loan. The Hessisches Landesmuseum Darmstadt will display the ensemble from 8 December 2017 to 11 March 2018.

The results of new interdisciplinary research on the ensemble, some of them sensational, have been prepared in close cooperation with internationally renowned experts in the goldsmith’s art for an extraordinary special exhibition at the Hessisches Landesmuseum Darmstadt.

The adventurous story of the discovery of the gold jewellery, the unusual circumstances of its acquisition for the Berlin Museums, and the various interpretations of the ensemble, often influenced by special interests, form central aspects of this unique exhibition, which will unite all the pieces attributed to this treasure for the first time. The most recent scientific findings, researched with a meticulousness worthy of forensic experts, present a completely new picture of these brilliant testaments to the art of secular gold jewellery in the high Middle Ages, and of their appropriation in the modern period.