Bertel Thorvaldsen’s seal
The earliest known of Thorvaldsen’s seals can be seen above. The first time it is known to have been used is in a letter of 5.1.1798 from Thorvaldsen to the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts, but it is here reproduced from a more perfect impression from 24.10.1800.
The wax of the seal served a practical purpose, as it often closed the written document to form an envelope, while at the same time it had a clear symbolical value, representing the first visible identification of the sender when the addressee received the letter. The wax seal on the envelope is thus a sign identifying the sender, and it acts at once as proof that it is genuine, as a signature and a personal greeting. Applying the seal was the last act before the letter was dispatched. Behind the seal, the recipient could find the world opened by the letter.
Bertel Thorvaldsen’s seal greets the reader on each page of The Archives. Above the seal, you will find the material that constantly opens up the way to new knowledge and new worlds for the present age – and thus reminds us of the lasting relevance of the documents passed down to us.
The Archives is a greeting from the sculptor to the beings of the modern virtual world – from Bertel to you.
Read more on Bertel Thorvaldsen’s seal and The History of the Archives.