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Arm Reliquary of Saint Bernward

German (Hildesheim)

Not on view

Arms of precious metal and gemstones over a wood core were a common form for medieval reliquaries. The hand is raised in blessing and wears a precious ring, an episcopal attribute, so it is assumed to be the arm reliquary of Saint Bernward. It is thought to have been made to commemorate the relocation in 1194 of Bernward’s relics, which are no longer present.

Arm Reliquary of Saint Bernward, Silver, gilded silver, rock crystal, and semiprecious stones; wood core, German (Hildesheim)

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