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The cenotaph of bishop Joris van Egmond

The cenotaph of bishop Joris van Egmond

The Domkerk was once the cathedral of Utrecht, but since the reformation in the 16th century it is a protestant church. Inside there are a few impressive graves and cenotaphs. Today we will have a look at the cenotaph of bishop Joris van Egmond.

Joris van Egmond, portrait by Jan van Scorel, c.1535

Joris van Egmond, portrait by Jan van Scorel, c.1535. Current location: Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam.

Joris (or George) van Egmond was born in 1504 in Egmond. He was the son of Count Jan (John) III of Egmond. Joris became bishop of Utrecht in 1534. Bishop Joris died in 1559 in St. Amand (France), where he was buried. His heart was sent to Utrecht and placed in this cenotaph.

The cenotaph has the form of an arch. There was a statue of the bishop in the centre, but this statue is now lost. The arch is decorated with the coats of arms of bishop Joris and his ancestors. In the middle you can read the bishop’s motto, Exerce pietatem (Exercise piety).

The Latin text at the bottom of the arch requests a mass for Joris van Egmond be held each first Thursday of the month, forever. It describes in detail how, when, and by whom the mass should be celebrated.

Cenotaph of bishop Joris van Egmond, Dom church, Utrecht

Cenotaph of bishop Joris van Egmond, Dom church, Utrecht

Cenotaph of bishop Joris van Egmond, Dom church, Utrecht

Cenotaph of bishop Joris van Egmond, Dom church, Utrecht

Portrait by Jan van Scorel, c.1535, current location Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. Photos of the cenotaph by the author, 2008. This post is submitted to the June edition of the Graveyard Rabbits carnival.

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