The Chalice on its Side

Courtesy of Fr Allan Barton on Facebook, this is a fascinating image of the Mass in the early sixteenth century.

sarum-chalice-on-sideI assume this is a Mass in England and the Sarum Use or a similar diocesan usage. I assume the child’s face on the altar is a carved one. Notice the chalice on its side on the paten. This is what the Sarum rubric says:

After receiving the ablution, the priest shall place the chalice on the paten, so that if anything remain [in the former] it may drain off [on to the latter]. And afterwards, inclining himself, he shall say. Let us adore the sign of the cross : whereby we have received the sacrament of salvation.

We can take it that the priest is saying the Postcommunion prayer. It is a High Mass because the deacon and subdeacon are visible. They are not in line like in the Roman rite.

In the Roman rite, the priest (subdeacon at High Mass) wipes the chalice with the purificator. It seems that the purificator was not used. I still use the purificator instead of laying the chalice on its side. I take a liberty in doing so, but it seems more practical than allowing the chalice to drain and dealing with the last drops. It would be interesting to research into the history of the purificator in the Roman rite, given that laying the chalice on its side to drain supposes the absence of a purificator.

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3 Responses to The Chalice on its Side

  1. Fr D V Ellis says:

    Wonderful to see your Sarum articles Father. We likewise love the Sarum and still use it in public (on Sundays)

  2. MaxineL says:

    Oh what a wonderful addition to your blog, Father. I am currently researching the Sarum Use/rite due to a dream I experienced last week and your site is my first pitstop! I am a Roman Catholic from Perth, Western Australia and send many blessings to you 🙂

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