The Foundations of Christian Art (Sacred Art in Tradition Series)
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Titus Burckhardt was a renowned expert on the art of traditional worlds. This book takes the reader through the history of Christian art, focusing especially upon architecture, iconography, and illumination.
Patriarchs, the Prophets, and the Saints, the powers of Nature are called upon: I rise today by the power of Heaven, by the power of the sun’s light, the moon’s brightness, the fire’s gleaming, the lightning’s quickness, the wind’s roaring, the sea’s depth, the earth’s firmness, and the rocks’ hardness.… Because all is one and the same God ordained unity. The Ambrosian Iliad The opposite pole to Irish ornament, and the other root of medieval book illumination, is figurative illustration as it
of the cross, the monogram, and the circle signify the Christ as spiritual synthesis of the universe. He is the all, He is the beginning, the end, and the timeless center; He is the “victorious” and “invincible” sun (sol invictus); His Cross rules the cosmos,4 it judges the cosmos. Because of this the monogram is also the sign of victory. The Emperor Constantine, whose position as supreme monarch in itself symbolized the sol invictus, inscribed this sign on his standard, thereby announcing that
sacred art as a consequence of the disputes between iconoclasts and iconodules, and to a large extent thanks to the threatening approach of Islam. The uncompromising attitude of Islam towards images necessitated something like a metaphysical justification of the sacred image on the part of the Christian community in danger, all the more so because the Islamic attitude appeared to many Christians to be justified by the Decalogue. This became the occasion for recalling that the veneration of the
Department at Bloomington, Indiana. He holds a Doctor of Jurisprudence, cum laude, from Indiana University. Michael and his wife, Judith, have spent extended periods of time visiting traditional cultures and attending sacred ceremonies throughout the world. Other Titles on Christianity by World Wisdom Christian Spirit, edited by Judith Fitzgerald and Michael Oren Fitzgerald, 2004 The Destruction of the Christian Tradition: Updated and Revised, by Rama P. Coomaraswamy, 2006 For God’s Greater
subject. Individual titles focus either on one spiritual tradition or on a central theme that touches upon diverse traditions. i The Foundations of Christian Art ii Introduction The Foundations of Christian Art Illustrated Titus Burckhardt Edited by Michael Oren Fitzgerald Foreword by Keith Critchlow World Wisdom iii The Foundations of Christian Art The Foundations of Christian Art © 2006 World Wisdom, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any