Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Dogmatic Sarcophagus

Title and Date of Work: Dogmatic Sarcophagus 320-350 A.D
Name of Artist: Unknown
Exact Location: Vatican Museum #104, Vatican
Medium: Marble
Dimensions: Large

     Also known as the Trinity Sarcophagus, this is an example of early Christians sarcophagus. This was only discovered in the 19th century during the rebuilding of the Basilica di San Paolo Fuori le Mura. This sarcophagus is one of two important examples of Christian Roman sculptures of the Constantine Era. Its name comes from the references to the Dogmas of the Council of Nicea in the 4th century.
     This is a double register sarcophagus, a style that was popular during the 4th century. This sarcophagus is decorated with a series of spiritual scenes. The top register depicts two books from Genesis and two miracles of Jesus. The bottom register which has six scenes shows the birth of Jesus, two about the Bible, and three for St. Peter. On the top left corner sarcophagus God the Father is depicted with two other men looking quite similar representing the Trinity. These three figures are involved in the creation of Adam and Eve. The middle figure, being God the Father, is creating Eve from the rib of Adam. This is the earliest depiction of the Trinity.

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