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Living Water: Images, Symbols, and Settings of Early Christian Baptism
     

Living Water: Images, Symbols, and Settings of Early Christian Baptism

by Robin Jensen
 

This general survey of early Christian baptismal iconography and architecture integrates visual depictions and physical settings of baptism with textual evidence for its practice and purpose. An opening overview of pictorial art (paintings, relief sculpture, mosaics, and ivories) prompts questions about components of the actual ritual which are treated in the

Overview

This general survey of early Christian baptismal iconography and architecture integrates visual depictions and physical settings of baptism with textual evidence for its practice and purpose. An opening overview of pictorial art (paintings, relief sculpture, mosaics, and ivories) prompts questions about components of the actual ritual which are treated in the literary sources. The study’s second half considers selected baptismal structures, examining the symbolism, purpose, and possible meaning of their spatial design and decorative programs. In most instances the synthesis of documentary and material evidence is enriching and complementary. However, even when physical and textual data diverge, their discontinuity demonstrates the variability of ritual performance and the perennial distinction between ideal and actual practice..

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Robin Jensen is our leading authrority on early Christian art [...] Her [...] splendid book will only enhance her reputation further.[...] The books is full of fascinating insights.'

J.K. Elliott, Novum Testamentum 53 (2011)

'...successful attempt to combine the study of textual evidence with that of visual art and physical environments connected to the liturgical theology and ritual practice of baptims in the early Church. [...] this book is well-written, and it is based on an updated bibliography in many languages. This makes it a very useful book [...]. Some parts are highly original and present interesting results of an innovative approach.'

Olof Brandt, Theologische Literaturzeitung 138 (2013) 1

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9789004188983
Publisher:
Brill Academic Publishers, Inc.
Publication date:
11/19/2010
Series:
Vigiliae Christianae, Supplements Series
Pages:
312
Product dimensions:
6.30(w) x 9.40(h) x 0.90(d)

Meet the Author

Robin M. Jensen, Ph.D (1991), Columbia University is Luce Chancellor's Professor of the History of Christian Art and Worship at Vanderbilt University. Her publications include Understanding Early Christian Art (Routledge, 2000) and Face to Face: The Portrait of the Divine in Early Christianity (Fortress, 2005).

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