Antique Belgian Silver Holy Water Stoup

Date: Circa 1840

Country: Belgium

Stock Number: 8656

An excellent quality antique silver holy water container mounted on a decorative wall plaque. The deep relief ornament is very charming and the pressed out detail is very clear. Weight 124 grams, 3.9 troy ounces. Height 17.5 cms. Width 11 cms. Marked on the front above the font with Belgian silver marks for Ghent, Circa 1840.

Literature: A stoup is a receptacle for holding holy water. Some Christians hang a home stoup (a small decorated plaque with a small bowl) inside their homes, either at the house's entrance or, more commonly, on a bedroom wall at the head of the bed. The holy water is used to cross themselves in the morning and to make the sign of the cross over their beds at night.

The use of the stoup began in the earliest centuries of the Christian Church. Many stoups were destroyed or disappeared during the French revolutionin 1789 and in following years.

Although not in general use today, these holy water stoups were passed down through the family and given as gifts on special occasions such as births, first communions, confirmations and weddings.

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