Small vessel in which the Holy Eucharist is carried to the sick.

Catholic Encyclopedia. . 2006.

     Catholic_Encyclopedia Pyx
    The word pyx (Lat., pyxis, which transliterates the Greek, pyxis, box-wood receptacle, from pyxos, box-tree) was formerly applied in a wide and general sense to all vessels used to contain the Blessed Eucharist. In particular it was perhaps the commonest term applied to the cup in which the Blessed Sacrament actually rested when in the Middle Ages it was suspended above the altar. Thus the Custumal of Cluny in thc eleventh century speaks of the "deacon ( see Deacons ) taking the golden pyx (auream pyxidem) out of the dove (columba) which hangs permanently above the altar". In later times however it has come about that the term pyx is limited in ordinary usage to that smaller vessel of gold, or silver-gilt, in which the Eucharist is commonly carried to the sick. Such vessels are sometimes made flat like a watch, sometimes mounted upon a little stand like a miniature ciborium. From the resemblance in size and shape the word pyx is also used to denote the small silver vessel or custode in which the Sacred Host is commonly kept in the Tabernacle, that it may be transferred thence to the monstrance when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed for the service of Benediction. In the Middle Ages pyxes for carrying the Eucharist to the sick were not unfrequently made of ivory. In spite of synodal decrees it is to be feared that there were many churches both in medieval and later times which preserved no proper pyx for taking Viaticum to the sick. In these cases the custom seems to have prevailed, even if it was not officially tolerated, of carrying the Host wrapped in a corporal in a burse which was suspended round the priest's neck or even of placing it between the leaves of a breviary.
    The "pyx-cover", or "pyx-cloth", of which we sometimes read in medieval inventories, was a veil which hung over the pyx as it was suspended above the altar, and it was consequently a cloth of considerable size. At the present day the pyx when carried secretly to the sick, as is the case in most Protestant (Protestantism) and many Catholic countries, is generally carried in a burse or pyx-bag, i.e. a silken bag suspended round the priest's neck within which the pyx is wrapped in a diminutive corporal used for that purpose.
    CORBLET, Histoire du Sacrement de l'Eucharistie (Paris, 1885), I, 379-90; OTTE, Handbuch der kirchlichen Kunst-Arch ologie (Leipzig, 1883), I, 236-40; ROHAULT DE FLEURY, La Messe, V (Paris, 1R87), 57-94, with plates; BUMPUS, Dictionary of Ecclesiastical Terms (London, 1910), pp. 251-252.
    Transcribed by Wm Stuart French, Jr.

The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume VIII. — New York: Robert Appleton Company. . 1910.

Catholic encyclopedia.

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(especially that in which the host is kept), , ,

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  • Pyx|is — «PIHK sihs», noun, plural pyx|i|des «PIHK suh deez». 1. a boxlike vase; casket. 2. Botany. pyxidium. ╂[< Latin pyxis, idis < Greek pyxís, ídos a box; see etym. under pyx (Cf. ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • pyx|is — «PIHK sihs», noun, plural pyx|i|des «PIHK suh deez». 1. a boxlike vase; casket. 2. Botany. pyxidium. ╂[< Latin pyxis, idis < Greek pyxís, ídos a box; see etym. under pyx (Cf. ↑ …   Useful english dictionary

  • Pyx — Pyx, n. [L. pyxis a box, Gr. pyxi s a box, especially of boxwood, fr. py xos the box tree or boxwood. See {Box} a receptacle.] [Written also {pix}.] 1. (R. C. Ch.) The box, case, vase, or tabernacle, in which the host is reserved. [1913 Webster]… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Pyx — Pyx, v. t. To test as to weight and fineness, as the coins deposited in the pyx. [Eng.] Mushet. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • pyx|id|i|um — «pihk SIHD ee uhm», noun, plural i|a « ee uh». a seed vessel that bursts open transversely into a top and bottom part, the top part acting as a lid. ╂[< New Latin pyxidium < Greek pyxídion (diminutive) < pyxís, ídos box; see etym. under… …   Useful english dictionary

  • pyx|ie — «PIHK see», noun. 1. a very small, trailing evergreen shrub that has numerous small, white, star shaped blossoms, found in pine barrens of the eastern United States. 2. Botany. a pyxidium. ╂[American English, contraction of New Latin Pyxidanthera …   Useful english dictionary

  • Pyx — ist: ein Synonym für Faustkampf, eine Disziplin im Fünfkampf der Olympischen Spiele der Antike Pyx als Abkürzung steht für: Schiffskompass (Sternbild) (lateinisch: Pyxis), ein Sternbild des Südhimmels Diese Seite ist …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • pyx — [ pıks ] noun count a small container used for storing the holy bread used in Christian COMMUNION …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • pyx — c.1400, a box, esp. the vessel in which the host or consecrated bread is preserved, from L. pyxis, from Gk. pyxis box, from pyxos box tree, of uncertain origin …   Etymology dictionary

  • pyx — (also pix) ► NOUN Christian Church ▪ the container in which the consecrated bread of the Eucharist is kept. ORIGIN Greek puxis box …   English terms dictionary

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