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Important reliquary with large first-class relic of Saint Nicholas of Myra

Spectacular Gothic architectural brass reliquary housing very large and important first-class ex ossibus relic of Saint Nicholas, Bishop of MyraThe relic is displayed inside of a red glass cylinder recepticle and identified on a manuscript cedula as S. Nicholai Ep. Mir. (Saint Nicholas, Bishop of Myra). The reliquary is secured with perfectly preserved seal of red Spanish wax bearing an imprint of a coat of arms of Fr. Enrique Laso de la Vega (†1729), Titular Bishop of Thaumacus (1728-1729). .

Saint Nicholas († ca. 345) was buried in a church in Myra (modern day Turkey) and his tomb by the Middle Ages already became a popular place of Christian pilgrimage. In May of 1087, under the pretext of preserving them from the Muslim Turks who occupied Myra, relics of the Saint were stolen by Italian merchants from the place of his burial and transported to Italy where they are still kept in a crypt of a specially built Basilica of St. Nicholas in Bari. According to legend, when Italian merchants opened the sarcophagus, a spicy smell of myrrh spread from the relics of Saint. Merchants from Bari managed to take only some of the relics of the Saint, leaving many smaller fragments in the grave. These fragments were collected by Venetian sailors during the First Crusade (1096-1099) and taken to Venice, where they were kept in church of St. Nicholas. Modern scientific research in Bari and Venice proved that fragments in two cities belonged to the same skeleton. Small part of the relics is still kept in Turkey in Church of St. Nicholas.

Additional Info

  • ID#: 17-RSMBR-19
  • Size: 26 cm x 18 cm (10 1/2 in x 7 in)
  • Age: ca. 1720s
  • Origin: Italy
  • Materials: brass
  • Price: Price upon request
  • Orthodox Cross
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