Beautiful and very rare old altar cross of carved wood containing a reliquary of the True Cross. The reliquary is a silver metal cross with the relic under glass, insertion mounted into the center of the fine carved wood altar cross. There is no label inside, only the lovely sliver of wood. It appears there is a cross shape on which there is another cross appearing to be of an ample amount of wood shavings or fragments well attached. We acquired this from a good friend who has been collecting True Cross relics for a long time; this was the first one she has parted with. She told us the silver metal cross reliquary is removable from the wood altar cross, but we have chosen not to remove it as we saw no necessity to disturb the contents with the possibility of damage occurring. The interior of the reliquary appears to be in good condition, the metal cross is secure in its wood mounting and the wood altar cross also in good structural condition. The altar cross design reminds us of Black Forest style; this piece came from France. The silver reliquary cross measures 1 & 3/4" tall and the entire altar cross measures 16" tall and 8" across. We believe the reliquary is all original to the altar cross as there is a small door on the back of the cross base in which the original paperwork from the Vatican would have been, now long gone. Unfortunately churches and also individuals stored the paperwork separately from the actual displayed reliquary, and most of the time when passed on or sold the papers never went with the reliquary, such a shame. Most of the true cross reliquary I see do not have their authentication papers for this reason, but what they are is obvious. This is a very sacred item, and MUST be displayed properly and with respect. We are restricting international sale on this item, will ship to Canada or UK with confirmed address and of course within the USA with confirmed address; international customers may contact us if interested. Please note Ruby Lane return policy requires an item to be returned in "original condition" as shipped, removal of the metal cross or opening the cross voids this definition of original condition and the item will not be returnable if disturbed. We have detailed closeup photos of this item to confirm any changes.