Throughout most of their history these alabaster mourners have evoked a sense of awe and mystery as well as curiosity and admiration. They were originally arranged in processional order around the sides of the ducal tomb within a marble arcade in the Chartreuse de Champmol. The realistically carved mourners remain the most famous elements from Philip the Bold’s tomb. Carved by Claus de Werve, no two are alike. They retain minute details of costume and features, and the faces of some are nearly portrait-like in their depiction of facial creases and expression, suggesting actual individuals, while the faces of others are partly obscured by their cowls.
A plaster cast of this mourner decorates the empty niche in the Tomb of Philip the Bold in Dijon, France.