Saints and Their Symbols
Every saint has features or characteristics that allow for clear identification. Saints are often depicted with particular objects that played a dramatic role in their lives, and these objects or characteristics have become symbolic of the saints and can be used to identify them in art. For instance, Saint Catherine of Alexandria is usually shown with a wheel, the object on which she was tortured as a result of her faith, while Saint Peter the Apostle often appears with the keys to heaven given to him by Jesus.
These symbols represent drama, suffering, and unbending faith, and one has only to be aware of these elements in order to recognize the saints in art. The identities of the saints have been encoded for centuries in symbols one only had to be aware of these elements in order to be able to identify saints in the wide range of artistic and devotional images that have been created throughout the long history of religion.
This book covers the most important saints of Christianity, more than 120 in all, offering a handy reference tool for those who want to read the iconography of saints and understand the stories told by countless painting and artworks.
Beautifully illustrated by more than 200 classic images, Saints and their Symbols is a guide that teaches readers to recognise the saints, not only offering insight into their appearance, but also the meanings of their symbols and the roles these figures played throughout history.
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