A depiction of the Trinity is delicately engraved on the front of this pendant cross, which is actually a shallow capsule.
An image of the Virgin and Child decorates the back.
The stems that extend from beneath the arms of the cross at an angle originally held pearls; at the bottom edge there is a hole that once held a bell.
The tau, or T-shaped cross, was associated with the Order of Saint Anthony's fire - a toxic condition caused by the consumption of spoiled rye - was widespread, and the order founded many so-called Antonine hospitals.
The capsule most likely held an herbal compound used in treating the burning heat that was primary symptom of the disease.