29 May 2010

Oakapple Day; and Wartski of Llandudno

Best wishes to readers on this annual commemoration of the (formal) end of the Great Rebellion and the Return of our late Sovereign Lord King Charles II. Today, however, not inappropriately, I wish to Remember his Father.

Is the title of Wartski's of Llandudno, a Mayfair jeweller meant to be a joke? I went there recently for a small but perfectly formed exhibition about the relics of Blessed Charles Stuart. It is interesting, I think, that the cult of his relics began immediately after his martyrdom in 1648. When we come to the regularisation of his status with the Holy See, the length of the cultus may be canonically significant in establishing beatification by equipollence.

Everything very touching. The pearl earring taken from his ear after his execution and passed on to his daughter (you can see it in the Vandyke triple portrait done for Bernini); relics of his blood; secondary and tertiary relics of which the most moving is the Chalice from which he received the Most Precious Blood on the morning of his execution. Reliquaries containing his hair.

The Royal Martyr shares with Blessed John Henry Newman (though for quite different reasons) the characteristic that there are (I think?) no primary relics in the form of bones.

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Old Style. Caught you there.

2 comments:

Sir Watkin said...

No joke. Founded in Bangor, moved to Llandudno and thence to Mayfair.

Employed at one time the odious David Lloyd George, Despoiler of the Church and shameless adulterer, as its solicitor.

Rubricarius said...

I am sorry that I did not know of this exhibition as I would have gone (venerating the relics may have been difficult though I suspect.)

My understanding is the last time the coffin of St. Charles was opened was in 1813 when the remains were substantially incorrupt according to an account in 'The Oxford Book of Royal Anecdotes'.

Apparently a neck bone was removed and turned into a salt cellar!