TillbakaIncarnation
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Chalice

Late-medieval silver-gilt chalice. Probably brought to Sweden as booty and reworked in Stockholm by Mickeel Beck (Böck). In 1634 the chalice was presented to Norrsunda Church by Ebba Oxenstierna, in memory of her husband Johan Sparre.

The chalice has a hexafoil foot with a filigree lower edge. The foot is set with six silver panels, two of which date from its reworking in Stockholm. The two additional ones display the Oxenstierna and Sparre coats of arms with the initials IS and EO (for, respectively, Johan Sparre and Ebba Oxenstierna), and the older ones show Christ on the Cross, the Virgin and Child and two angels. There are traces of earlier engravings under the two additional panels. On the foot we also see a stamp consisting of a crown and the letters MB, belonging to the goldsmith Mickeel Beck (Böck), who was active in Stockholm.

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The chalice is a liturgical object, and in medieval times it was classed as a “vasa sacra” or sacred vessel. As such, it came into direct contact with the host and therefore had to be made of a rare metal, either gold or silver. But this chalice, made in medieval times and presumably used in Roman Catholic Europe until it was captured as a prize of war, also worked well in Lutheran Sweden. The role of the Eucharist remained strong after the Reformation, and accordingly, the chalice was one of the most important and, often, costliest of parochial possessions.