This cassone inlaid fruit wood on a walnut background, has a very beautiful decoration with geometric patterns and foliage scrolls. On the facade, two hagiographic scenes represent the conversions of Saint Paul on the left and Saint Hubert on the right
This chest rests on a solid molded plinth.
The conversion of Saint Paul of Tarsus
Paul’s conversion is mentioned in his epistles and described in the Acts of the Apostles. In both cases, it is presented as a miracle. Indeed, in addition to having persecuted the first Christians, Paul never met Jesus before his Crucifixion and was not one of his disciples. Although Paul later introduced himself as an apostle of Christ, he was not one of those called “the Twelve“.
« And he went down on the earth, and a voice said to him, Saul, Saul, why are you attacking me so cruelly?
And he said, Who are you, Lord? And he said, I am Jesus, whom you are attacking:
But get up, and go into the town, and it will be made clear to you what you have to do.
And the men who were with him were not able to say anything; hearing the voice, but seeing no one.
And Saul got up from the earth, and when his eyes were open, he saw nothing; and he was guided by the hand into Damascus.
And for three days he was not able to see, and he took no food or drink.
Now there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and the Lord said to him in a vision, Ananias! and he said, Here I am, Lord.
And the Lord said to him, Get up, and go to the street which is named Straight, and make search at the house of Judas for one named Saul of Tarsus: for he is at prayer;
And he has seen a man named Ananias coming in and putting his hands on him, so that he may be able to see.
But Ananias said, Lord, I have had accounts of this man from a number of people, how much evil he has done to your saints at Jerusalem:
And here he has authority from the chief priests to make prisoners all who give worship to your name.
But the Lord said, Go without fear: for he is a special vessel for me, to give to the Gentiles and kings and to the children of Israel the knowledge of my name:
For I will make clear to him what troubles he will have to undergo for me.
And Ananias went out and came to the house, and putting his hands on him, said, Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, whom you saw when you were on your journey, has sent me, so that you may be able to see, and be full of the Holy Spirit.
And straight away it seemed as if a veil was taken from his eyes, and he was able to see; and he got up, and had baptism;
And when he had taken food his strength came back. And for some days he kept with the disciples who were in Damascus. »
— Ac 9, 3-19
On this cassone, the fall of Saint Paul is represented, we see him fallen to the ground while his fallen horse rears up. In the distance looms Damascus.
The conversion of Saint Hubert
Since the 15th century it has been said that Lord Hubert was so passionate about hunting that he forgot his duties. Legend has it that he could not resist his passion on Good Friday, and having found no one to accompany him, he went hunting alone. On this occasion, he found himself facing an extraordinary stag. This one was white and had a luminous cross in the middle of its woods.
Hubert began to chase the deer but it still managed to outrun it without getting tired. It was only after a long time that the animal stopped and a voice thundered in the sky, addressing Hubert in these terms:
“Hubert! Hubert! How long will you chase the beasts in the forests? Until when will this vain passion make you forget the salvation of your soul? “. Hubert, seized with fear, threw himself on the ground and humbly, he questioned the vision:
“Lord! What do I have to do?
The voice resumed:
“So go to Lambert, my bishop, in Maastricht. Convert yourself. Do penance for your sins, as you will be taught. This is what you must resolve to not be damned in eternity. I trust you, so that my Church, in these wild regions, may be greatly strengthened by you.“
And Hubert to respond, with strength and enthusiasm:
“Thank you, O Lord. You have my promise.
I will do penance, since you want it.
I will know how to show myself worthy of you in all things! “
According to a local tradition, it is at the site of the Saint-Hubert chapel in Tenneville that Saint Hubert would have had this vision of the deer carrying a cross between its antlers; a cross, called “Red Cross” marks the location.
More historically, in 688 he abandoned the Duchy of Aquitaine to his brother to devote himself completely to God. After an exemplary monastic life, he was elected bishop of Liège-Maestricht and Tongres. Attentive to all misery, he helped the unfortunate and the prisoners. He died of an injury caused by a clumsy worker who crushed his left hand.