Monstrance. Custody used to expose the sacred host in Catholic churches or to be carried in procession .


CUSTODY (Monstrance) Etim. from the Latin custody. Sacred container used to place the Eucharist so that it can be seen for adoration. It is also called ostensorium, from the Latin ostendere, to show. There are a variety of sizes and styles. Generally around the Eucharist rays are represented that symbolize the graces conferred on those who worship.


The custodians or monstratories have their origin in the institution of the feast called Corpus in the mid-thirteenth century. But it is very rare to find them before the fourteenth century and their forms are not fixed until well into the fifteenth century. At the beginning, images, crosses, reliquaries and ciboria were used for said object, accommodating them to their new destination. But since the middle of the 15th century the form of an ogival turret or temple (almost always made of silver) bristling with pinnacles and supported by an artistic base was adopted, leaving in the middle a lunula or virile of silver or gold to visibly place the host. At the time of the Renaissance they were also built in the form of a temple but in the Roman style and since the end of the 16th century the ones that are most in use in the form of the radiant sun began to appear which in the eighteenth century have circles of heads of angels surrounding the central virile. In Spain, in the middle of the 15th century, the custom of procession on a chariot or rich litter and on a tower-shaped throne was established to guard it properly.


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