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Sacrament tower, St John's Hospital Chapel


 
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 01, 1970 12:00 am    Post subject: Welcome! Reply with quote

Discuss.
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Giles O'Bryen
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 19, 2003 1:36 pm    Post subject: Sacrament towers Reply with quote

What is a sacrament tower? Does anyone know?
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Wynn Wheldon
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 25, 2003 2:42 pm    Post subject: Sacrament towers Reply with quote

As any fule do kno: Originally the term was the Greek kiborion, which meant a canopy resting on four pillars and placed over the altar as a sign of reverence. This custom spread to the West in the sixth century, and these canopies were often called civories or balsacchions from the word baldacco (meaning Baghdad, because many rich fabrics from the city were used in the adornment of these canopies). Pretty topical stuff. In the Middle Ages, they were often suspended from the ceiling or projected from the wall to cover an altar or Episcopal throne. Such canopies, whether pillared, suspended or projected, came to be required over the high altar and that on which the Blessed Sacrament was reserved, but the General Instruction of the Missal of Pope Paul VI no longer requires this usage (thank goodness).
In the Middle Ages, the term "ciborium" was sometimes used to refer to the sacrament tower, where the Blessed Sacrament was reserved and from that to the actual vessel or pyx (now, there's a great scrabble word of which I was previously ignorant) which contained the Sacred Species. A foot or base was added to the pyx to make it easier to handle and perhaps for greater dignity in exposition. In the Baroque era, when Communion was usually from pre-consecrated Hosts reserved in the tabernacle, the ciborium became larger and looked more like a chalice, to the displeasure of some contemporary liturgists who contended that it should look more like a dish for the consecrated Bread than a cup (I'm definitely with them on this). Therefore, contemporary ciboria are sometimes more dish-like in appearance and now may be made of any worthy and durable material (Martin Johnson's skull, per example)
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Giles O'Bryen
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 26, 2003 12:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What a splendid and erudite reply. It is interesting that where some would use a square of silk, others must have a tower. I remember that our chapel at my first school was rather ill-equipped: no sign of a sacrament tower, nor a tabernacle, nor even a sacrament shoebox in which to keep any hosts which had been consecrated but not taken in communion. The priest would therefore have to eat the leftovers himself, which took a deal of mastication for they are very dry. If only we had known we boys could easily have fashioned a makeshift balsacchion from an old rugger shirt to save the poor man's jaws!
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Margarita Genyte
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 20, 2007 7:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

i have never heard about it since i came here (: interesting thing are happiming in the world (:
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Melina Barbous
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PostPosted: Tue Jan 31, 2017 3:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Mike Witot
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