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Large reliquary with important relic of Basil of Caesarea (the Great Hierarch), Doctor of the Church

Large oval glass-fronted brass reliquary theca housing ex ossibus (of the bone) relics of Basil the Great. A significant (over 55 mm / 2 inches in length!) bone relic is affixed to the background of patterned silk ground and identified in Latin on a fancy manuscript cedula label as S. Basily Ep. D. (St. Basil, Bishop, Doctor of the Church). On the back, under a protective cap, the theca is secured with a perfectly preserved seal of red Spanish wax bearing an imprint with a coat of arms of Cardinal Antonio Felice Zondadari (†1823), Archbishop of Siena (1795-1823). 

Saint Basil the Great Hierarch (known as Basil of Caesarea) was the Greek bishop of Caesarea Mazaca in Cappadocia, Asia Minor (modern-day Turkey) and along with Gregory of Nazianzus, and Gregory of Nyssa is referred to as the Cappadocian Father. He was an influential theologian who supported the Nicene Creed and opposed the heresies of the early Christian church. In addition to his work as a theologian, Basil was known for his care for the poor and underprivileged. Basil established guidelines for monastic life that focus on community life, liturgical prayer, and manual labor and is remembered as a father of communal monasticism in Eastern Christianity. 


Additional Info

  • ID#: 238-RSCR-8
  • Size: 13.5 cm (5 1/2 inches) in length
  • Age: ca. first quarter of the 18th century
  • Origin: Siena, Italy
  • Materials: brass, glass, silk, paper, Spanish wax
  • Price: Price upon request
  • Orthodox Cross
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