Crosier: Difference between revisions

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The origin of the crozier as a staff of authority is uncertain, but there were many secular and religious precedents in the ancient world. One example is the [[lituus]], the traditional staff of the ancient Roman [[augurs]],<ref>http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/04515c.htm#Origin</ref> as well as the staff of [[Moses]] in the [[Hebrew Bible]].
 
In the [[Western Church]] the usual form has been a [[shepherd's crook]], curved at the top to enable animals to be hooked. This relates to the many metaphorical references to bishops as the shepherds of their "flock" of Christians, following the metaphor of Christ as the [[Good Shepherd]].
 
The Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Rite Catholic crosier is found in two common forms. One is [[tau]]-shaped, with curved arms, surmounted by a small cross. The other has a top comprising a pair of sculptured serpents or dragons curled back to face each other, with a small cross between them. The symbolism in the latter case is of the [[Nehushtan|bronze serpent]] made by [[Moses]] as related in {{bibleverse||Numbers|21:8-9|HE}}. It is also reminiscent of the [[caduceus]] of [[Hermes]] or the rod of the ancient Greek god [[Asclepius]], whose worship was centered around the Aegean, including Asia Minor, indicating the role of the bishop as healer of spiritual diseases.{{Citation needed|date=September 2011}}