Pyx

Pyx

c. 1170-1180

Gilded copper, champlevé and cloisonné enamel, wood core (modern)

Overall: 5.4 x 21.3 x 9.3 cm (2 1/8 x 8 3/8 x 3 11/16 in.)

Purchase from the J. H. Wade Fund and the Fanny Tewksbury King Collection by exchange 1949.431

Description

The image of Christ’s crucifixion dominates this enameled box. Personifications of the Christian church, the Jewish faith, and the Virgin and Saint John flank the cross. Two Old Testament scenes--Abel’s sacrifice of sheep and Abraham’s sacrifice of Isaac--appear on either side. The box once served as a pyx, a container for the consecrated host, itself a symbol of Christ’s sacrifice.

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