Rooms of the Museum
Cappella delle ReliquieGround Floor
In this room have been displayed some reliquaries which have been kept in the Cathedral and in the Baptistery. What significance do the relics of the saints have for Christians? The apostle Paul taught that the human body is the “temple of the Holy Ghost” (1 Corinthians 6.19), and it is in this sense that the Church conserves the bodily remains of men and women in whom the Spirit has more evidently dwelt, venerating them and the objects associated with their lives and deaths through rituals and prayers. This practice of devotion was particularly strong in Florence, and there are more than six hundred relics of various kinds conserved in the Cathedral and the Baptistery. Displayed in their splendid reliquaries on feast days, they are the symbol of the reward in store for even the body of those who die in communion with the risen Saviour.