1. Sacred Destinations
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  4. Trier Cathedral Treasury
  5. Trier Cathedral Treasury Photos
  6. Trier Cathedral Treasury

Photo of Trier Cathedral Treasury

Gozbert Censer (c.1100)

This intricately crafted bronze censer was found in the parish church of Buchholz in 1846. It is not known for which church it was originally made, but it must have been a grand one. It was probably made in Trier around 1100. The censer stands 8.5 inches (21.5cm) high and represents the Heavenly Jerusalem. It is shaped like a building with a cross-shaped plan, four apses, and 100 windows. On the four sides of the lower part are four busts: Moses with his staff, Aaron with a censer, and the prophets Isaiah and Jeremiah. Atop the gables stand four full-length figures: Abel with a lamb; Melchizedek with bread and chalice (seen here), Abraham about to sacrifice his son, and Isaac blessing Jacob instead fo Esau. All eight figures represent Old Testament prophets and events that prefigure the Eucharist. At the top is Solomon on his throne, with a fleur-de-lis crown, sceptre and imperial orb. Fourteen seated lions surround the base of the throne. Numerous Latin inscriptions explain the story of salvation, and one memorializes the bronze caster: "You who reads this, whoever you are, pray that Gozbertus may live!" The chain holder (behind on the right) has four medallions of the apostles Peter, Paul, James and John, with dragons between them. In the center is Christ on his throne.

Photo © Holly Hayes.