A small cruet, made of glass, earthenware, or metal, used as a receptacle for the holy CHRISM. It is usually kept inside a locked wooden box, and placed in the sanctuary or close to the baptismal font.

A. J. Butler describes one such chrismatory he saw in the Church of Anba Shinudah in Cairo: “a curious round wooden box with a revolving lid. The box is solid throughout, but has three holes scooped out inside, in each of which is deposited a small phial of oil” (1884, Vol. 2, p. 56). These three phials contained the holy chrism, the oil of the sick, and the oil of the catechumens.


  • Butler, A. J. The Ancient Coptic Churches of Egypt, Vol. 2, p. 56. Oxford, 1884.


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