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A Matter of Faith

To this day, it remains a mystery how an 11th century crescent moon, fashioned from polished rock crystal, left an Egyptian mosque during the 14th century and was incorporated into a Christian monstrance in Venice. An act of mutual recognition? Or is this object instead a trophy that positions one faith tradition above another?

Tension is generated, in any event, by the configuration of the individual parts and their divergent uses in different eras and contexts. Inducement enough to explore the worldviews associated with the great religions through the ages and in today’s world as well – to ask what essential traits they share, and what they can learn from one another.

Reliquary monstrance

1021–1036 AD and 14th century


Egypt, Venice, Vienna

» GNM KG695