Name/TitleSilk skull cap reliquary, Turku Cathedral, Finland
About this objectOne of three skull relics at Turku cathedral, this one was stored with another inside a medieval wooden casket known as the Shrine of Blessed Hemming. The textile cover consists of three layers, the innermost linen and the other two silk. The outmost layer is red weft-faced twill silk —possibly Chinese-made. This has been embroidered in silk and metal threads with a picture of a martyrdom. The bones, only some of which are from a skull, are wrapped in individual linen packets, sewn together with linen thread. Recent scientific testing supports an assembly date of the mid-14th century although the bones were found to date from 550 BC to AD 1220.
Date Made550 BC to AD 1400
Subject and Association KeywordsRelics
Subject and Association KeywordsSilk
Subject and Association DescriptionLearn More: Arponen, Aki & Vanden Berghe, Ina & Kinnunen, Jussi, 2019; Arponen, Aki Voitto, Heli Maijanen, and Visa Immonen, 2018.
Medium and MaterialsBone, silk, linen, metal
Measurements19.2 x 14.1 x 12 cm.
Credit LineTurku Cathedral
Object numberEXH79: Skull Cap Reliquary