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Reliquary monstrance with large relics of Saint Martyr Cyriacus, Bishop of Jerusalem

Opulent 17-th century reliquary in a form of a chest of gilt and painted wood with frontal openings and internal vitrine of glass housing very large and historically significant ex ossibus (bone) relics of Saint Cyriacus, Martyr & Bishop of Jerusalem. The relics are identified on a manuscript paper cedula label as S. Corpus S. Ciriaci Epi. et Martire (from the holy body of Saint Cyriac, Bishop and Martyr). The reliquary is recertified in the 19th century with red ribbon secured by seals of red Spanish wax with imprints of a coat of arms of Cardinal Lorenzo Litta  (†), the Vicar General of Rome (1818-1820).

Saint Judas Cyriacus [Judah Kyriakos ] of Jerusalem (†d. ca. AD 366) was a Bishop of Jerusalem and a Christian martyr who assisted Saint Helena with the finding of the True Cross.   He is said to the last in the desposynic line of Bishops of Jerusalem. After assisting Saint Helena with the finding of the True Cross, Judas Cyriacus was baptized, consecrated as bishop of Jerusalem, and martyred during the persecutions of Julian the Apostate. In the Acts of his martyrdom, he engages in a dialogue with the emperor Julian, and is described as suffering horrible torments. The Empress Galla Placidia is said to have presented Ancona with the relics of Judas Cyriacus. However, the saint's head was situated at Provins, which was brought over from Jerusalem by Henry I of Champagne, who built a church in this town to contain it.  His feast is celebrated in the Eastern Orthodox Church on  October 24 and in the Roman Catholic church on May 1 and 4.

Additional Info

  • ID#: 27-RSMBR-23
  • Size: 11 x 9 x 5 in (28 x 23 x 13 cm)
  • Age: ca. 17th century, re-certified in 19th century
  • Origin: Italy
  • Materials: Gilt wood, glass
  • Price: Price upon request
  • Orthodox Cross
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