Canadian, 19th century
silver mounts, ebonized wood
102.7 x 2.6 cm
Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Acquired with a repatriation grant from the Government of Canada through the Cultural Property Export and Import Act and unexpended acquisition funds
A verge is a staff borne by a bishop, or another person of authority, when entering or leaving the church, or on public occasions. This particular verge carries the engraving of a bishop’s mitre over the initials F.M. (Francis, Montreal). On its reverse is engraved the date 1850. Consecrated the first Bishop of Montreal on July 25, 1850, the Reverend Francis Fulford carried this verge in procession during his enthronement later that same year at Christ Church Cathedral in Montreal. The maker, François Sasseville, served his apprenticeship under the Canadian silversmith Laurent Amiot. Sasseville was a successful and prolific silversmith, recognized particularly for his liturgical silver. He was often inspired by contemporary silver designs imported from France.