The mediaeval furniture in Halberstadt Cathedral and Cathedral Treasures is central to the history of European furniture and testifies to the early days of carpentry and joinery. Several chests and cupboards date from the 13th to 16th centuries. Made from solid wood with heavy iron fittings, they were used to safely store the cathedral’s precious treasures. Their shape is accentuated by a variety of carved dragons and flowers. They are accompanied by a 15th-century box armchair, lecterns and large bronze candlesticks, some of which are still used in the cathedral today.
One well-known highlight is a richly painted reliquary cabinet from the Liebfrauenkirche; the church opposite the cathedral. This was created in the first half of the 13th century and still retains its painted decorations based on Byzantine panel painting.
The reliquary shrine which once stood on the main choir altar is an unusual piece of furniture. It is made of solid oak, fully clad in iron plates, and was secured with eight locks, each operated by a different member of the clergy. It thus served as a theft-proof safe which, once opened, was used to display the golden reliquaries.