Collection Online

The Entombment, pax
(1550-1600)

Medium
gilt-bronze
Measurements
17.0 × 11.5 × 0.8 cm
Place/s of Execution
Italy
Accession Number
4141-D3
Department
International Decorative Arts
Credit Line
National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne
Bequest of Howard Spensley, 1939
Gallery location
14th - 16th Century Gallery - Painting & Decorative Arts
Level 1, NGV International
About
A pax (Latin for peace) was an object employed in the ceremony of the Mass, where it was displayed on an altar table and passed around at the blessing by the priest for the congregation to kiss. In early Christian times churchgoers gave one another a kiss of peace. By the thirteenth century this custom had been replaced by the passing and kissing of the pax. Paxes formed part of the furnishings of all churches and usually bore depictions of scenes associated with the death of Christ.