This is a very special antique profession crucifix that would have been worn by a priest or nun, at the chest or waist, when taking their vows. Dates to the 1800s. The cast figure of Christ is nicely detailed, and entire piece is handmade, with an ebony inset and metal surrounding. The letters INRI appear at the head of the cross, meaning Jesus of Nazareth king of the jews. Below Christ's feet are the skull and crossbones, a reminder of our mortality, and how Christ triumphed over death. The latter element makes this a rare piece. Often, this piece was removed as people were often disturbed by it, but this one remains intact. The back of the cross features the symbol of the Sacred Heart. The metal content is not known and the cast figure may be made of a different metal than the surround.
Measures 4.25"L x 2.25"W x 0.375"D. Some surface wear and patina. We have chosen not to clean this piece, as we feel the patination speaks to the age of the piece. Found in France; origin unknown.