Questions tagged [art]

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19
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3answers
3k views

Is Knuth's 3:16 project unique?

Famous computer scientist Donald Knuth is also the author of 3:16 Bible Texts Illuminated (A-R Editions, 1990). This is a tour of the Bible using the methodology of "stratified random sampling", where ...
17
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1answer
5k views

Why do some Christians object to images of Jesus?

Within some branches of Protestantism, many Christians believe that "images of Jesus" are sinful, and that Christians should not attempt to produce them. Some go so far as to say that they should be ...
16
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6answers
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Is it historically inaccurate that Jesus is usually portrayed as European looking?

Is it historically inaccurate that Jesus is usually portrayed as European looking, having certain facial and bodily features (muscular)? Would most people follow Him if he did not look white or was ...
16
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1answer
2k views

Why did John Newton oppose Handel's Messiah?

Recently, while listening to a lecture on worship by Kevin Twit, I was surprised to hear John Newton's opinion on Handel's Messiah: John Newton, the author of "Amazing Grace," refused to let Handel'...
16
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1answer
3k views

When did the angel archetype change from masculine to feminine?

Throughout the bible, angels typically appear as men or a masculin form. They're often described as warriors, engaging in battle. (Source) However, in modern, generally Western (or at least American)...
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1answer
626 views

What does the abbreviation “RNIO” mean in a painting of the Virgin and Child?

In the Crivelli painting "The Virgin and Child with Infants Bearing Symbols of the Passion" there is (at the right, under a bare tree) an injured (?) knight with a red shield inscribed with the ...
13
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1answer
615 views

Do any theologians argue that in the Fall, Adam sacrificed himself out of love for Eve?

I've heard a few Christians say, perhaps half-jokingly, that Adam only ate the forbidden fruit in the Garden of Eden because he realized that it was the only way for him to stay with Eve. By this ...
13
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1answer
27k views

What does the Bible say about the appearance of angels? [closed]

In Christian art, angels are often depicted as winged human-like creatures. However, I'm curious if there is any justification for this in the Bible? I've sometimes heard that there isn't, so that's ...
13
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1answer
419 views

Trying to find information on a crucifix found whilst metal detecting

I am trying to find the age of a silver cross that I have found on a site that had a benedictine priory on it from 1149 to 1540. I believe that clues to its age are the use of a two bar Patriarchal ...
12
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6answers
3k views

Why do images of saints often depict them with unusual hand gestures?

Many saints are often depicted holding a book or some other object. However, I have noticed that there are quite a few that have unusual hand gestures. Why is this? Augustine of Hippo Index finger, ...
11
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3answers
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What's the significance of this image for Jehovah's Witnesses?

I was browsing through the friends of one of my Facebook friends. One of them is, I am guessing, a Jehovah's Witness because some of their posts have Jehovah's Witness-related entries such as photos ...
11
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2answers
1k views

Are the images of Jesus drawn with blond hair and blue eyes correct? [duplicate]

Lately I heard that, as an inhabitant of ancient Israel, it is more likely that Jesus had dark skin and probably had hair that was a little curly. Why is it that illustrations always show him with ...
11
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2answers
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How did the four living creatures become associated with the Gospel writers?

The visions of Ezekiel recorded in Ezekiel 1 and that of John in Revelation 4:7 include four living creatures (ζῷα) that stand in the presence of the throne of God. In both visions these heavenly ...
11
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2answers
1k views

Why does a beheaded saint have the halo above the stump?

Many Christian martyrs have been beheaded, and they are often shown in art carrying their own severed heads. Sometimes, the halo appears not around the head, but where the head should be, as in the ...
10
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1answer
43k views

What is the meaning of the large statue of a pine cone in Vatican City?

What is the meaning of this statue in Vatican City?
10
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4answers
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Where did the religious symbol of the 'halo' come from?

I once read somewhere that the 'halo' was inherited by Christianity from ancient worshippers of the Sun.  However, although this seems believable I never bothered to verify its historic credibility - ...
10
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4answers
28k views

Why is Jesus often depicted with long hair if 1 Corinthians 11:14 says it is disgraceful? [closed]

According to 1 Corinthians 11:14, it is disgraceful for men to have long hair: Does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears long hair it is a disgrace for him? Why, then, is Jesus ...
10
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3answers
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What is the significance of position of fingers in Jesus' hand as shown in his images?

In most of the visual images of Jesus – both in picture and sculpture forms – fingers of His right hand, raised in blessing, follow a particular arrangement. Is there any significance to that ...
9
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2answers
429 views

Prior to 1900 were there any depictions of Satan in Christian art as a woman/female?

Are there any Christian symbolic depictions Satan in art as a woman? In Christian art, Satan has often been depicted as a man (male) or some evil looking monster out of man's imagination of what the ...
9
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1answer
4k views

What does spikenard have to do with St Joseph?

The coat of arms of Pope Francis includes references to Jesus (the sun with cross, nails, and IHS), Mary (the star) and Joseph (the cluster of flowers). The association of the flowers with St Joseph ...
9
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1answer
234 views

In Eastern Orthodoxy, how is an icon recognized as inspired?

In a discussion on imagery and icons, the Orthodox Study Bible says: Every image, or icon, of Christ has significant theological content. For it proclaims anew the Incarnation of God, who "became ...
9
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1answer
158 views

What is the earliest point in history where the cross icon started showing up on artifacts related to Christianity?

I can’t imagine the cross would have become an art-piece while the Romans were still killing Christians. The cross symbol during the persecutions must have in some way seemed similar to the Nazi ...
8
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1answer
14k views

Why is archangel Michael portrayed with a sword in art?

There is no mention of Michael wielding a sword in the bible, so I wonder if there are references in other texts?
8
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2answers
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Where did the artistic rendering of Jesus originate?

There seems to be a pretty recognizable and consistent artistic image of Jesus Christ, despite the lack of evidence of what he looked like. Where did this initial image originate?
8
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2answers
999 views

Why are there Sibyls and Prophetesses in the Sistine Chapel?

For what purpose did Michelangelo add each Sibyls or Prophetesses to the ceiling of the Sistine chapel? This is an explanation to why they're there in the first place. The latter, although belonging ...
8
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1answer
360 views

What are halos?

Art (particularly Christian art, it seems) is filled with halos. There's halos on Jesus at the Last Supper; Jesus, Moses, and Elijah at the transfiguration; on angels; the virgin Mary; etc. What ...
7
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1answer
5k views

What is/are the Hebrew/Aramaic word(s) for “devil” in The Passion of the Christ movie?

What is the word used for "devil" in Mel Gibson's movie "The Passion of the Christ" during the scene where Christ is interrogated by the Sanhedrin? The word "devil" appears in the English subtitles ...
7
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3answers
532 views

Why is Jesus portrayed and remembered in a state of suffering?

My observation of Christianity is that Jesus Christ is portrayed, worshiped and promoted in his state on the cross: suffering, crucified, having wounds. I don't see what sense this makes. This seems ...
6
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1answer
143 views

Drawing of a Christian helping his own assailant

A few years back I saw a drawing of a Christian priest helping his own assailant to get up. It was on a wiki page that I cannot remember. I am hoping that some one here knows the page, and maybe even ...
6
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2answers
663 views

How are the bread and wine explained by those who forbid images of Jesus?

This question is directed at those who subscribe to the Westminster Standards, particularly Westminster Larger Catechism 109, which reads: The sins forbidden in the second commandment are [...] the ...
6
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2answers
1k views

Why is Christ often shown with long hair in Christian iconography?

A friend of mine is Catholic and she has an icon or picture of Christ. It shows him with long, dark brown hair. Is there anything in the New Testament that justifies this representation? It seems to ...
6
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1answer
163 views

What is the meaning of the stained glass above the altar at Votivkirche in Wien with the Portuguese Quinas on it?

I would like to know more information on a glass painting I found in the church Votivkirche in Wien (Vienna, Austria). Above the person with the shield there is the symbol of the Portuguese Quinas. ...
6
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1answer
199 views

What does Pentecostalism consider Prophetic Fine Art to be?

In many Pentecostal churches, they talk about prophetic art - pictures/paintings with prophetic value. And of course, the Catholic Church is full of art, but do they consider their churches art ...
6
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1answer
89 views

Do any groups of Quakers still disapprove of the fine arts?

The family of the great painter Benjamin West belonged to a Society of Friends when West was a child, and according to his biography, in that environment his prodigious artistic talents were not ...
6
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0answers
118 views

Finding a mural of an unknown cathedral?

I am looking for the name of the cathedral that contains the following mural. What I know for sure is: That it has been done between 2004 and 2008, more likely in 2008. It was made in a Catholic ...
5
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3answers
620 views

Why is Jesus looking on an oddly standing stone?

I am not a Christian, so please excuse my Philistinism if I'm missing the obvious, but ever since I saw this painting on my Grandma's wall I've been intrigued by it. Particularly the standing stone in ...
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4answers
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Was Adam anatomically God's image, as Michelangelo's painting seems to indicate? [closed]

Under the patronage of Pope Julius circa 1512, Michelangelo painted The Creation of Adam, seen below, in the Sistine Chapel. The painting shows both God and Adam as adult men with navels, and the ...
5
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1answer
202 views

Do any denominations use the full form of INRI?

At John 19:19-20 we read: Pilate also had an inscription written and put on the cross. It read, “Jesus of Nazareth, the King of the Jews.” Many of the Jews read this inscription, because the place ...
5
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2answers
384 views

What is the meaning behind this coin of Pope St. John Paul II?

I have in my possession a big coin in a nice box with the papal heraldry of Pope St. John Paul II. I am very curious Where this coin came from and why this coin exists. I have found many ...
5
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1answer
450 views

What was Saint Thomas Aquinas's girding by the two angels?

Diego Velázquez's Temptation of St. Thomas shows him being girded by angels with a belt of purity: What is the event behind this painting?
5
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1answer
363 views

Does R.C. Sproul elaborate on his position regarding images of Christ?

In discussions of theologians who take the continental Reformed view of the 2nd commandment (as opposed to the Westminster / Puritan view), people often point out this brief quote by R.C. Sproul: ...
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3answers
144 views

Does Stained Glass art hold any special meaning for Catholics?

We see beautiful Catholic buildings adorned with multiple works of stained glass art; is this for any particular reason other than the fact that stained glass art looks nice?
4
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1answer
141 views

Questions about this icon of Saint Sophia

Below is an icon of Saint Sophia and her three daughters (Faith, Hope, and Charity). It's so cute! I hope someone who is knowledgeable about iconography can answer a couple questions I have about it. ...
4
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1answer
163 views

Violence and Iconography

Are there any rules for painting (or praying) Orthodox Christian icons that disallow depictions of violence or conflict? For example: Would an icon depicting a murder be a problem?
4
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1answer
251 views

Besides St. Casimir, are any other saints portrayed with three hands in iconography?

Other than the icon of St. Casimir in Vilnius (below), are there other examples of saints with three hands? Does a third hand make up part of the iconography of St. John the Evangelist? Image by ...
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1answer
3k views

What is the name of this painting of Mary and the infant Jesus?

Since there exists no "Arts" site on Stack Exchange, I was inclined to come here to ask about this Christian work of art.
3
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3answers
319 views

Is there any biblical basis for the Church to depict Jesus as a European or some other ethnic race?

The reason I ask is that the Most Rev Justin Welby, Archbishop of Canterbury (Anglican Church of England) was recently interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s ‘Today’ programme and said that in the wake of Black ...
3
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1answer
81 views

Is there a Christian equivalent of Mandala (word or symbol)?

During a recent visit to Canterbury Cathedral particular circular patterns on the floors (pictured) reminded me of the circular patterns of Mandalas. I was wondering if these are simply 'for ...
3
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2answers
3k views

Does the Bible say anything about chimeras or explains their purpose? [closed]

Firstly, I'm sorry if it's not the right place to ask this kind of question. I didn't know where else I could ask about it. I'm interested in Simon de Myle's painting of the ark. In the middle of the ...
3
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1answer
419 views

Who started the Judensau image?

I found about Judensau sculpture when I want to know deeper about Martin Luther. Below is a little bit information about Judensau I read from Wikipedia: A Judensau (German for "Jews' sow" is a folk ...