Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Ecclesiastical A container in which wafers for the Eucharist are kept.
  • n. Ecclesiastical A container in which the Eucharist is carried to the sick.
  • n. A chest in a mint in which specimen coins are placed to await assay.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. the small container used to hold the consecrated bread of the Eucharist

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The box, case, vase, or tabernacle, in which the host is reserved.
  • n. A box used in the British mint as a place of deposit for certain sample coins taken for a trial of the weight and fineness of metal before it is sent from the mint.
  • n. The box in which the compass is suspended; the binnacle.
  • n. Same as Pyxis.
  • transitive v. To test as to weight and fineness, as the coins deposited in the pyx.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To test by weight and assay, as the coins deposited in the pyx at the British mint. See trial of the pyx, above.
  • n. In the Roman Catholic Church, the vase or vessel in which the reserved eucharist is kept.
  • n. A box or chest in which specimen coins are deposited at the British mint.
  • n. Nautical, the metallic box in which the nautical compass-card is suspended.
  • n. In anatomy, the acetabulum of the hip-bone; the cotyloid cavity; the pyxis.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. any receptacle in which wafers for the Eucharist are kept
  • n. a chest in which coins from the mint are held to await assay

Etymologies

Middle English pyxe, from Latin pyxis, box, from Greek puxis.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin pyxis, from late Ancient Greek πυξις ("box"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • In later times however it has come about that the term pyx is limited in ordinary usage to that smaller vessel of gold, or silver-gilt, in which the Eucharist is commonly carried to the sick.

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 12: Philip II-Reuss

  • The hanging pyx is a suspended form of tabernacle, or place of reservation in other words, for the Blessed Sacrament.

    The Hanging Pyx

  • One extant mediaeval example of the pyx cloth that covered the pyx is to be found, coming from the Hessett Church in Suffolk, England:

    The Hanging Pyx

  • From the resemblance in size and shape the word pyx is also used to denote the small silver vessel or custode in which the Sacred

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 12: Philip II-Reuss

  • The word pyx (Lat., pyxis, which transliterates the Greek, pyxis, box-wood receptacle, from pyxos, box-tree) was formerly applied in a wide and general sense to all vessels used to contain the Blessed

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 12: Philip II-Reuss

  • Personally, I thought it was sort of amazing that anyone twelve years old would know that a pyx is a container for the Host during communion.

    VANISHING ACTS

  • A pyx is the vessel, usually boxlike, which holds the consecrated Eucharist.

    A Handbook of Symbols in Christian Art

  • At the present day two vessels are used to reserve the Blessed Sacrament: one, called a pyx, is a small round box and serves for carrying the

    The Catholic Encyclopedia, Volume 3: Brownson-Clairvaux

  • And then I remembered that a pyx is a sacred vessel, and quartz is a hard stone, as hard as the heart of a religious foe-curser.

    Over the Teacups

  • Giovanni and seeing him intent upon the carved work and paintings of the pyx, which is upon the altar of the said church and which had then not long been placed there, he judged the place and time opportune for carrying his intent into execution.

    The Decameron of Giovanni Boccaccio

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