A prayer nut was an extravagant, intricately carved boxwood carving from the Middle Ages that could be carried and used for private devotion. Owned mainly by the wealthy in northern Europe, a prayer nut was as much a status symbol as a sign of faith, as only those with money could afford them.
Prayer nuts are small, measuring only a few inches in diameter. When closed, the object resembles an elaborately carved nut that could be worn on a belt or a rosary. Once opened, the interior reveals incredibly detailed, religious scenes.