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Reliquary Theca with Relics of 4 Abbots of Badia di Cava Monastery: St. Alferius St. Leon, St. Peter & St. Constabilis

Large oval silvered brass glass-fronted reliquary theca housing precious relics of four saint abbots of Cava: St. Alferius Abbot, St. Leon Abbot, St. Peter Abbot, and St. Constabilis Abbot. A substantial relics are affixed to a pale silk background. The precious relics are identified on typeset paper cedulae labels. On the back, under a protective cap, the theca is secured with a perfectly-preserved seal of red Spanish wax bearing an imprint of an unknown Roman Catholic Bishop - most likely of the Postulator General responsible for the cause of canonization of the Saints.

Alferius Pappacarbona (†1050) was a noble, who after spending many years as a layman in civil service, in 1002 was named the head of a delegation from his city to speak with King Robert II of France. Taking ill during the journey, he convalesced at a monastery and vowed to become a monk himself if he recovered. Around 980, he withdrew to the foot of Monte Finestra, southwest of Cava, where he lived a life of contemplation and prayer. At the beginning of the 11th century, a nucleus of hermit monks, attracted by the famed saintliness of Alferius, joined him. In 1101, he founded the monastery of La Trinità della Cava that followed the Benedictine rule. Pope Urban II endowed this monastery with many privileges, making it immediately subject to the Holy See, with jurisdiction over the surrounding territory.

The first four abbots of Cava were officially recognized as saints on December 21, 1893, by Pope Leo XIII. The first four abbots are Alferius (1101-1050); Leo I (1050–79); Peter of Pappacarbone (1079–1122); and Constabilis (1122–1124). 


Additional Info

  • ID#: 119-RSABR
  • Size: 3 1/2 x 3 inches (9 x 8 cm)
  • Age: ca. 1890s
  • Origin: Cava, Italy
  • Materials: silvered brass, glass, silk, wax
  • Price: $2,750
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