Monday, 22 February 2021

cathedra petri

Gifted to Pope John VIII in 875 by Holy Roman Emperor Charles the Bald (Karl der Kahle), the simple wooden stool that tradition claims was the pontifical throne of Saint Peter as Bishop of Rome and encased in a magnificent reliquary by Gian Lorenzo Bernini in the mid seventeenth century. The chair—which research suggests only dates to the seventh century—has metal loops, suggesting it was used as a sedia gestatoria (see also)—is venerated on this day with a feast celebrating the relic as a synecdoche (συνεκδοχή, simultaneous understanding) to reflect on the importance of episcopal office, locally and globally.