Reliquary Cross


On view at The Met Cloisters in Gallery 14

Twelfth-century churchmen and the nobility in central France prided themselves on their devotion to the scared sites of the Holy Land. Relics from that region, alternating with more than sixty "gems" of colored glass, are set like jewels on this cross. Identified by inscriptions along the sides, they include a fragment of wood believed to be from the cross on which Jesus died, relics of his tomb, and relics of the Virgin Mary, the Holy Innocents, and early deacons of the Church.

Reliquary Cross, Silver gilt, rock crystal, glass cabochons, and possible human remains; wood core, French

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