Gilt Silver Enameled Ciborium. Salesians Tibidabo Don Bosco. Barcelona, Circa 1915

Magnificent silver enameled ciborium dedicated to Saint John Bosco. Historic piece in excellent condition.



Extraordinary gilt silver enameled ciborium dedicated to Don Bosco by the Salesians of the Tibidabo and made in Barcelona circa 1915. This spectacular piece of silverwork is in amazing condition. On the base, the inscription HIC PANIS QUI DE CAELO DESCENDIT (This is the Bread that descended from Heaven). The inscription has a very small flaw in the enamel that is the only flaw of this magnificent ciborium. This is a scarcely visible detail which could be easily repaired with a touch of blue enamel. If we turn the ciborium upside down, under the foot we will discovered a hand-engraved inscription: La Comunidad del Tibidabo a su santo Fundador D. Bosco (The Tibidabo Community to their Holy Founder D. Bosco). It is quite possible that the Salesian community of Mount Tibidabo acquired this wonderful ciborium to dedicate it to Saint John Bosco, founder of the order and promoter of the construction of their temple, the Temple of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. According to history, in the late 19th century rumors were heard about the construction of a casino-hotel and a Protestant temple on the summit of Mount Tibidabo in Barcelona. Hearing this, a group known as the Council of Catholic Gentlemen bought the plot and in 1886 gave it to the Italian priest John Bosco, founder of the Salesians of Don Bosco (SBD) and canonized in 1934. In those days the priest was visiting the city, invited by Dorotea de Chopitea, and proposed to build a temple dedicated to the Sacred Heary of Jesus, similar to the one founded in Rome by himself and the famous Sacré-Coeur of Paris. The temples first stone, designed by the architect Enric Sagnier, was put in 1902. The construction works ended in 1961 under the supervision of his son, Josep María Sagnier. The ciboriums foot has four exceptional enameled medallions with key scenes of the Life of Jesus: The Annunciation, The Birth and The Crucifixion. The scenes are colorfully painted and show a relevant attention to detail. The foot is also decorated with the mentioned inscription, in golden Gothic letters on blue background, and is accompanied by lovely enameled details of golden wheat stalks on turquoise field. The node bears an engraved inscription, in high relief lettering: HOC FACITE IN COMMEMORATIONEN MEAM (Do This in Commemoration of Me). The subcup is decorated with an enameled band composed of bunches of grapes in vines on a blue background. Over this band there is another one, smaller in size, painted in turquoise and with geometrical golden motifs. Crowning the ciborium, the cross at the top of the lid is adorned with two red stones which could be cabochon-style carved rubies. At the foot we can also see the name of the maker, CABOT E HIJOS BARCELONA, and some hallmarks. Gorgeous and really special, this extraordinary gilt silver enameled ciborium dedicated to Don Bosco by the Salesians of the Tibidabo is a historic piece, worthy to belong to a museum of Spanish religious orders. Dimensions: Foots Width: 5.91 in / 15 cm. Cups Width: 4.41 in / 11.2 cm. Height: 10.63 in / 27 cm. Weight: 820 g.

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