Angelica vestis, in English and European antiquity, was a monastic garment that laymen wore a little before their death, that they might have the benefit of the prayers of the monks.
It was from them called Angelical, because they were called Angeli, who by these prayers animæ saluti succurrebant. Thus, where we read the phrase ad succurrendum in old books, it must be understood of one who had put on the garment, and was at the point of death.
I have found reference to this being a monk’s habit, but there’s something I like also about the idea of a garment made especially for the purpose. A focal object of prayer, something about transference. One could pray generically for all the dying in one’s community, but to pray for those who would die wearing this particular object… Why is it necessary, after all, to know the name or circumstance of anyone for whom one prays? We intuit it must be more meaningful, but is it because it changes the character of our intent? A divine mechanism? If the former: creating a physicality of intent especially appropriate for the physicality of death?
Anyway, I can’t find a picture, boo.