Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Book of Jonah visualized in Antiquity

Catacomb of St. Peter and St. Marcellino, Rome
Image American Institute of Orthodoxy

Catacomb of Callixtus, Rome 
"Stories of Jonah, from a late 2nd century fresco in the Catacomb of Callixtus. From right to left, Jonah is thrown into the sea, where a monster is about to swallow him; Jonah is spat out of the sea-monster; Jonah rests under the vine. The Greek and Latin words for “whale” can also mean “sea-monster”, and the creature that swallows the prophet is usually shown as such in early Christian art."

Pio-Christo collection, Vatican 
"A third-century sarcophagus in the Vatican Museums’ Pio-Christian collection. This is one of the most elaborate versions of the Jonah story, and is therefore known as the Jonah Sarcophagus, although there are many other ancient representations of the prophet. Note that Noah is seen standing in a square ark above the sea-monster on the right, a clever use of the extra space to add another important Biblical episode." 
Gregory Dipippo
New Liturgical Movement

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