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Theca with relics of the Holy Belt of the Blessed Virgin Mary and of Saint Charles Borromeo

Oval glass-fronted coin silver reliquary theca, containing a particle relic of the Holy Girdle of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Ex. Cing[endo] B[enedetta] V[ergine]. Mar[ie]) commonly known as The Girdle of Thomas and a significant first class ex viscera relic of Saint Charles Borromeo(Ex Viscer[a] S. Caroli B[orromeo]). The back, protected by clear glass, is secured by a seal of red Spanish wax with a coat of arms of the issuing authority. This reliquary combines two relics veneration of which has been regarded as especially helpful for pregnant women.

The Girdle of Thomas, also known Virgin's Girdle, Holy Belt, or Sacra Cintola is a Christian relic in the form of a "girdle" or knotted textile cord used as a belt, that was dropped by the Virgin Mary from the sky to Saint Thomas the Apostle at the time of her Assumption to heaven. It is housed at Prato Cathedral in Tuscany in Italy. 

Saint Charles Borromeo (Italian: Caroli Borromeo, Latin: †1584) was a cardinal who was archbishop of Milan from 1564 to 1584. Among the great reformers of the troubled 16th century, Borromeo, with St. Ignatius of Loyola, St. Philip Neri, and others, led the movement to combat the inroads of the Protestant Reformation. He was a leading figure during the Counter-Reformation and was responsible for significant reforms in the Catholic Church, including the founding of seminaries for the education of priests. He is a holy patron of apple orchards; bishops; catechists; catechumens; cardinals; seminarians; spiritual directors; spiritual leaders; Lombardy, Italy; and Monterey California; and sought to assist in intestinal disorders; against ulcers; colic; and stomach diseases.

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Additional Info

  • ID#: 09-DDWR-45
  • Age: ca. 19th century, Italy
  • Price: $1,750
  • Silver
  • Orthodox Cross
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