Hidden Meaning: A Catholic Reliquary in an Anglican World
Author(s): Merry Outlaw
More than one hundred human burials have been excavated at Jamestown over the past 20 years, and thus far, few have contained grave goods. The discovery of a small box on top of Captain Gabriel Archer’s coffin was, therefore, surprising to archaeologists. Extensive scientific testing determined the box is silver and contains human bone and a lead ampulla. It is a Catholic reliquary, a container to store holy relics—the bones of a saint, and a vial of holy water or blood of a saint. This paper will attempt to explain the presence of a Catholic reliquary in an Anglican church in an Anglican colony, at a time when English Catholics were severely restricted from practicing their faith, and when all but the highest-ranking colonists took a loyalty oath to King James I as the head of church and state.
Cite this Record
Hidden Meaning: A Catholic Reliquary in an Anglican World. Merry Outlaw. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Fort Worth, TX. 2017 ( tDAR id: 435310)
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min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;