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Late Antique Egyptian Funerary Sculpture: Images for This World and the Next

Thelma K. Thomas

Verlag: Princeton University Press, 1999
ISBN 10: 0691034680 / ISBN 13: 9780691034683
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Titel: Late Antique Egyptian Funerary Sculpture: ...

Verlag: Princeton University Press

Erscheinungsdatum: 1999

Zustand: very good


Gently used. Expect delivery in 20 days. Buchnummer des Verkäufers 9780691034683-3

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Early Coptic art, once heralded as the crude product of a poor, indigenous, Christian peasantry, is here dramatically recast in the more inclusive cultural terms of late antiquity. Focusing on funerary sculpture, one of the best-known categories of late antique Egyptian art, Thelma K. Thomas demonstrates how skilled artisans created a varied repertory of works for a diverse body of commissioners. Some of these sculptures were made for grand monumental tombs and commissioned by an urban, landowning class with strong Hellenistic roots; others were made for smaller and less imposing monuments and commissioned by distinctly different clienteles from monasteries and towns, as well as by different socioeconomic classes within the cities.

Thomas balances keen analysis of the surviving sculptures with close attention to primary written sources and archaeological evidence. The approach yields original interpretations of regional implications for attribution groups, and provocatively atmospheric reconstructions of the works as they would have appeared in their original settings. The sculptures' motifs and styles provide evidence for focused discussions of the cultural affiliations of the late antique Egyptians described in this book--pagan and Christian, secular and monastic, children and adults. Thomas's reading of the sculptures' cosmic and eschatological themes allows for an even richer understanding of this historical moment.


"Thelma K. Thomas's book represents a revolution in our understanding of Egyptian art of late antiquity. It brings to bear new data in the form of Thomas's analysis of the original plaster and paint overlays of these sculptures and her recognition of recarving and forgeries, and it radically reinterprets the entire corpus. I found reading this book exhilarating."--Roger S. Bagnall, Columbia University

"This book is the first synthetic study of late antique funerary sculpture from Egypt and the first such study of either regional or general funerary sculpture of the late antique period. Its importance extends to the areas of social and religious practice and beliefs, and of funerary art in the late Roman and early Byzantine empires."--Anna Gonosova, University of California, Irvine

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