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Painting (324-565)

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Wall-painting of Sosanna
Funerary wall-painting with the unique, in Greece, depiction of the Old Testament story of Sosanna, second half of 4th century, Thessaloniki, Exhibition of Christian Antiquities in the White Tower.

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Wall-painting of Sosanna
Second half of 4th century

The wall-paintings of Early Christian basilicas (e.g. at Dion and at Argos Orestikon) and houses (in Thessalonike) consist of large rectangular panels imitating marble slabs and alternating with pillars or columns. Similar, plainer decoration has been found in tombs. The funerary wall-paintings are not a Christian innovation but a pagan survival.

In the early tombs there are symbolic depictions of Christ (e.g. Good Shepherd, Lamb etc.) and idolatrous themes (flowers, fruits, animals and birds) endowed with new Christian meaning; images of the dead are occasionally found.

From the 4th century the thematic repertoire is enriched with scenes from the Old and New Testaments. All these subjects are encountered in the funerary wall-paintings of Thessalonike, the affinity of which with the wall-paintings in the Roman catacombs is certain.

See Also
Civilization - Churches (324-565)
Graves (324-565)

Macedonian Heritage
Content courtesy Ekdotike Athenon S.A.