Subject Information

SUBJECT monstrances
TYPE AAT
REFERENCE ID 300083005
NOTES Christian liturgical vessels in which the Host (the bread consecrated in the Eucharist) may be displayed through an opening or through a transparent material; used either on an altar or in processions. It is usually made of gold or silver and is often decorated with precious stones. From the Baroque period onwards the Host is typically surrounded by a sunburst design. Modern usage has limited the meaning to vessels intended for the exposition of the Host; however the term was originally applied to all kinds of vessels of goldsmith's or silversmith's work in which glass or crystal were used to allow the contents to be readily visible, whether the contents were the Host, a relic of a saint, or another object. Distinguished from "pyxes," which are vessels used to hold the reserved Host on the altar or to carry the Eucharist to the sick.
HIERARCHY Objects Facet>Furnishings and Equipment>Containers>containers (receptacles)>ceremonial containers>liturgical containers>monstrances

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