Monday, January 18, 2021

Bishop's Arms on a Reliquary

Having looked at the coats of arms of two Bishops of Ghent, we now find the arms of a third, this time on a reliquary displayed in St. Bavo's Cathedral.

The reliquaries on display are all encased in glass cabinets, which is great for their protection, but also create issues with photographing them because of reflections in the glass. Anyway, this is the best that I could do at the time.

Here's a close-up from slightly different angle, which reduced the reflections sufficiently to allow you to really see the embroidered coat of arms on the end of the reliquary casket.

The arms here are those of the office of the Bishop of St. Bavo (which we have seen before), quartered with the personal arms of Jacob Boonen, sixth Bishop of Ghent 1617-1620. He was later the fourth Archbishop of Mechelen (1621-1655). If you'd like to know more about him, he has his own entry on Wikipedia (

The arms here are blazoned: Quarterly: 1 and 4, Azure a lion rampant barry (usually of six) argent and gules crowned or (Bishop of St. Bavo); 2 and 3, Or a saltire argent fimbriated gules (Boonen). Motto: Vince in bono (Overcome in good). The whole surmounted by the galero (ecclesiastical hat) of a bishop.

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