CRANACH, Lucas the Elder
(b. 1472, Kronach, d. 1553, Weimar)

Suicide of Lucretia: signature (detail)

Ink and wash on paper
Staatliche Museen, Berlin

In 1508 the Elector Frederick the Wise awarded Cranach a coat of arms in recognition of his achievements; this showed a crowned serpent with batwings and a ruby ring in its mouth. Cranach immediately adopted this mark as his workshop signature.