Guild chests

Guild chests were particularly valuable — they were also called counters or mothers and were treated with high respect.
Particularly celebrated was the moment of raising the cover and opening the chest, which was always accompanied by an atmosphere of concentration and solemnity. Administrative and legal activities could be conducted only when the chest was opened.
The usual contents of such chests were privileges, books, stamps, all important documents as well as guild insignia. No wonder then that the chests were always carefully secured with special devices and locks (cryptological path).
Chests were often equipped with secret compartments; they had semi-chests in which writing accessories were kept. A vital element of guild equipment was stamps with which important documents were confirmed. The oldest ones, belonging to a tailors’ guild, had a symbol of scissors. Guild accessories also included obesłania (wooden or metal plates bearing the emblem of the guild, used to confirm guild documents) and statutes.

Elaborated by Editorial team of Małopolska’s Virtual Museums,
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 This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Poland License.

See also:
Chest of the furierrs’ guild in Kęty
Chest of the millers and bakers guild in Kęty
Chest of the shoemakers’ guild in Kęty
Chest of the tailors’ guild and related guilds in Kęty
Cooper’s guid chest
Counter of the guild of red tanners, leather dressers and glove makers
Counter of the surgeons’ guild