Panel from a Monstrance Cabinet

Filipino (Filipino)
17th-18th century
Silver, wood frame
: 28 1/2 x 17 5/8 x 1 3/8 in. (72.39 x 44.77 x 3.49 cm)
Credit Line
Gift of David Kamansky and Gerald Wheaton
Object Number

Derived from the Latin word monstrare, meaning “to show”, a monstrance is a ritual object used in some Roman Catholic and Protestant churches to display an object of piety such as a consecrated Eucharistic host or a holy relic. Monstrances typically have a pedestal base that supports a sunburst-shaped disc with a glass-fronted cavity containing the devotional object. Monstrances may be used by priests in religious ceremonies or they may be displayed on the altar of a church or chapel to serve as a focal point for prayers and devotions. When they are not being used ritually, monstrances are often stored in cabinets to protect their sacred contents. This silver panel decorated with the image of a monstrance probably came from just such a storage cabinet. The silver used to make the panel may have been mined in Mexico and shipped to the Philippines as part of Spain’s lucrative colonial trade.

Object Type
Academic Themes
Christianity in Asia