Early Byzantine Pilgrimage Art by Gary Vikan

By Gary Vikan

Early Byzantine Pilgrimage paintings explores the transportable artifacts of jap Mediterranean pilgrimage from the 5th to the 7th century, providing them within the context of latest pilgrims’ texts and the archaeology of sacred websites. The ebook indicates how the iconography and devotional piety of Byzantine pilgrimage paintings replaced, and it surveys the fabric and social tradition of pilgrimage. What did those early spiritual tourists take domestic with them and what did they go away in the back of? the place have been those “sacred souvenirs” synthetic and what was once their objective? How did the pictures imprinted upon a lot of them support become aware of that function? the 1st version of this pathbreaking booklet, released in 1982, demonstrated past due vintage pilgrimage and its artifacts as a tremendous subject of research. during this revised, enlarged model, Gary Vikan considerably expands the narrative via situating the excellent international of the early Byzantine pilgrim in the context of past due old magic and pre-Christian therapeutic shrines, and by way of contemplating the trajectory of pilgrimage after the Arab conquest of the 7th century.

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That incense shares the same meaning in the inscription on the token and in the story of Zosimas, and that both reflect a real and living aspect of contemporary piety are corroborated by a small but important group of inscribed bronze censers from Early Byzantine Sicily (fig. ). ” The allusion, of course, is to the story of the father of John the Baptist, who, according to the first chapter of Luke, entered the Temple to burn incense before the altar. ” This evidence suggests that the censer had an important role to play in the pious ritual through which the effective power of the eulogia was invoked.

1). 34. Monza, Treasury of the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, no. 2: Tin-lead pilgrim ampulla with seven scenes from the life of Christ (Adoration of the Magi and Shepherds on other side) (Jerusalem, ca. 600). 35a-c. 15: Gold and niello marriage ring with Holy Land scenes (Constantinople, seventh century). 36. Ephesus, Church of St. John: Marble column with graffito cross and inscription (seventh century). 37. 5: Bronze cross (with lead seating) with image and invocation of St. , sixth-seventh century).

The analogy here to our Symeon token, both in means. of manufacture and in medicinal use, seems inescapable, although for the “Symeon pill” the impressed word only serves to complement the healing power inherent in Symeon’s blessed earth and in his image. Amuletic words or phrases represent the first category of decoration common to this larger group of Symeon tokens but not found on the smaller, kneeling-suppliant group. A second category is represented by the Baptism of Christ, which here occupies the lower right quadrant of the token’s surface.

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