The most distinct feature of this seventeenth-century travelling chalice is its domed octagonal foot design, which distinguished it from the incurved pyramidal style more commonly found on Roman Catholic chalices of this period.
Its unusual design allows the cups and stem, when unscrewed, to fit snugly into the foot thus allowing ease of transport. The cast balustrade stem has screw threads of different sizes at either end to ensure that the knob cannot be inverted when the chalice is reassembled. One facet of the foot has an engraved crucifixion scene with the INRI titles above and a raised calvary below. The letters ‘FTD’ are engraved at the door of the cross.
Two chalices of similar design are recorded in J.J Buckleys ‘ Some Irish Altar Plate (1943)’ and one of these, the Elizabeth Forth Chalice, has a knop identical to this example and an inscribed date of 1633 with a Galway provenance. John Hunt believed that both knops came from the same mould and thus dated this chalice to 1630. The slighted incurved vertical member at the base of the foot has a continuous chevron with pellets, both in relief, which is similar to the decoration on many chalices of the early seventeenth century. The plain deep bowl has the makers marks ‘EG’ punched below the straight rim. This mark also occurs on the ‘Galway Sword’ and a Galway pyx ad may well be the mark of an unknown Galway maker.