Description This pax, a liturgical object which was ceremonially kissed by the priest and then by the communicants during the mass, is carved in elephant ivory. The shape of the tusk is reflected in the curved surface of the pax. The scene shows the Virgin Mary in the middle, holding the Christ Child, flanked by St. Catherine (with a wheel and the martyr's palm) and St. John the Baptist (holding the lamb). The ground is crosshatched; part of the pointed arch framing the scene is broken off. An inset handle on the back facilitates the holding of the object. A similar pax with the same iconography but finer carving is in the Detroit Institute of Arts.
Provenance William T. / Henry Walters Collection, Baltimore [date of acquisition unknown], by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 1931, by bequest.
Credit Acquired by Henry Walters
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