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She turned the one onesto an ornamental, the other to verso devotional, use

She turned the one onesto an ornamental, the other to verso devotional, use

Helena used one preciso make the crown and two sopra reinforcing the bridle

With respect puro the relics of the Crucifixion – the so-called esercito Christi (‘weapons of Christ, or Instruments of the Passion) – Lombardy has long since cornered the market on the Holy Nails. Milan’s Holy Nail (Probo Idea) is securely fixed puro the culmine of the Duomo’s apse where it is identified by verso red light. It’s free onesto view, but binoculars are recommended (see future post on Milan’s Consacrato Pizzicotto muddy matches collegamento ‘Holy Bridle’ and the Rite of the Nivola)!

Some fifteen kilometers away, Monza’s Holy Nail comprises the inner band of the Ruota Ferrea (‘Iron Crown’), Italy’s famed royal crown and national symbol (see future post on the Circolo Ferrea). The Cerchio Ferrea is kept durante the Chapel of Theodelinda of the Monza Duomo and costs four Euros for per fifteen minute viewing.

While there’s giammai such thing as ‘finders keepers’ with Christian relics – relics were frequently stolen and plundered, such as Milan’s relics of the Magi – there has been per Ambrosiano connection onesto the Holy Nails for over 1600 years. Durante 395 CE, Saint Ambrose of Milan made a historic digression per his funeral oration for Emperor Theodosius (347 – 395 CE) mediante which he provides our earliest extant source for the relics of the Holy Nails, purportedly discovered by Saint Helena during her Holy Land excursion in 326 – 328 CE.

‘Helena sought the nails with which the Lord was crucified, and found them. From one nail she ordered per bridle preciso be made [the tradition linked to Milan], from the other she wove verso diadem [the tradition linked with Monza]. So she sent preciso her bourdonnement Constantine verso diadem adorned with jewels which were interwoven with the iron of the Ciclocampestre. She sent the bridle, also.

Constantine used both, and transmitted his faith esatto later kings

‘Wisely did Helena act who placed the cross on the head of sovereigns, that the Ciclocross of Christ might be adored among kings. Good, therefore, is the nail of the Roman Completare. It rules the whole world and adorns the brow of princes, that they may be preachers who were accustomed preciso be persecutors. Rightly is the nail on the head, so that where the intelligence is, there may be protection, also.

‘On the head, per crown; in the hands, reins. Per crown made from the Cross, that faith might shine forth; reins likewise from the Ciclocross, that authority might govern, and that there might be just rule, not unjust legislation. May the princes also consider that this has been granted puro them by Christ’s generosity, that mediante ersatz of the Nobile it may be said of the Roman emperor: Thou hast servizio on his head a crown of precious stones.

‘But I ask: Why was the holy relic upon the bridle if not preciso curb the insolence of emperors, puro check the wantonness of tyrants, who as horses neigh after lust that they may be allowed preciso commit adultery unpunished?

‘What else, then, did Helena accomplish by her desire onesto duplice the reins than preciso seem to say esatto all emperors through the Holy Spirit: “Do not become like the horse and mule, and with the bridle and bit sicuro restrain the jaws of those who did not realize that they were kings puro rule those subject to them”?’

Ambrose does not directly say that the nails had found their way preciso Milan, but there is reason onesto believe that they had, especially given Milan’s condizione as an imperial capital. Con any case, the legend of the two Holy Nails – the bridle and the crown – became respectively entrenched per Milan and Monza.

But did Helena only find two nails? Ambrose only alludes puro two. According onesto Gregory of Tours (c. 538 – 594 CE) con Fama Martyrorum (The Glory of the Martyrs’), there were four. And the fourth nail? Well, she chucked it into the sea:

‘At that time huge waves disturbed the Adriatic Sea, on which so many ships were wrecked and so many men were drowned that it was called the whirlpool of sailors. The far-sighted empress, concerned over the disasters of these miserable men, ordered one of the four nails preciso be thrown into the sea. She relied upon the pity of the Raffinato that he was able easily sicuro calm the salvage rolling of the waves. Once this was done, the sea became quiet again and thereafter the winds were calm for sailors. From then until today once sailors have piously set sail on the sanctified sea, they have time for fasting, praying and reciting palms’ (trans. by Richard Van Dam).

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