The sculpture, which the extant invoice claims to have originated from the Sant' Agostino church of Cremona, was bought by the museum from Achille Glisenti, a painter and art dealer, in 1895 (figs 1–2). The frontal pose and the compactness of the white marble sculpture of exquisite quality in composition and execution (h.: 52 cm, w.: 21 cm, d.: 16 cm), as well as the finish of the sides and the back clearly reveal that it was designed for some niche. The representation of the enthroned Christ Pantocrator was prevalent in Venetian sepulchral sculpture in Italy in the 14th century, mainly in the 1340s–60s. The Budapest sculpture is most closely analogous with specimens of this strain by virtue of the iconography and style. Just like the analogies, it was probably set in the middle of the longitudinal side of the sarcophagus recessed in the shape of an ornate throne. Although no Christ figure carved separately of the side of a sarcophagus is known, there are at least two specimens of the enthroned Madonna figures far more frequently featuring in Venetian sarcophagi in the same place (figs 3–4). These two Virgin figures were carved for an exceptionally representative type of sepulchral monuments “with acroteria”, which is attributable to one of the most notable local master of the period, Andriolo de Santi.
The closest analogy to the Budapest sculpture can also be found in this circle. Christ Pantocrator adorning the main portal of the San Lorenzo church in Vicenza made by Andriolo's workshop in 1342–44 is almost like a copy of the Budapest work (figs 5–6). It is however hard to decide whether it was made by the same hand or it is a copy. There is yet another carving – that of the enthroned Madonna in the tympan of the portal – that resembles even more closely the Budapest statue in terms of quality, overall form and certain details (fig. 8). Though there are hardly any clues as to the authorship of individual parts of the portal, it is not far-fetched to presume – in agreement with many researchers – that the tympan figures were in all likelihood carved by Andriolo. In this way it is possible to attribute the Budapest sculpture to him, too, and it may as well be presumed that it was made for an above-mentioned representative sarcophagus. Furthermore, the quality even permits the assumption that it might be the prototype for the Venetian Pantocrator series of the 1340s–60s.
All this confirms that the Christ statue and the respective tomb must have been made for a distinguished person. There is however no data in connection with the Sant' Agostino church of Cremona or the related sources that might be linked to this sepulchral monument in any way, therefore the identification of the person is not possible. The client must have been a Cremonese with close contacts to Venice, which may be why he imported the sepulchre to the Lombardian city. The phenomenon fits in well with the overall situation of sculpture in Cremona in the 14th century: there was probably no noteworthy stonecarving workshop in the city, at least all the surviving works are by masters active elsewhere.