How Did Byzantine Art Influence Early Christian Art

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Religion has been tied to art long before our society even had a word for it. Since ancient times art has been used to promote the ideas and beliefs of many different religions to the world. Pictures of half human half animal beings paint the walls of Paleolithic caves the Egyptians hieroglyphics and statues depict their gods and the Greeks built temples and reliefs to worship and tell the stories of their gods the medieval ages were no different. The middle ages brought the rise of the popularity of the religion known as Christianity and the many works of art that would come with it.
The medieval ages also known as the middle ages was the period of history that was marked by the fall of the Roman empire in Europe and lasted from the 5th century
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The Byzantine phase of art was mostly characterized by religious expression. Arts were mainly concerned in showcasing the ideas of the church through art rather than accuracy. Most pieces of art at the time featured religious subjects such as depicting the life of Christ. Many of the practices that where featured in early Christian art were further explored during the Byzantine period. For example mosaics had began to rise in popularly during early Christian art the Byzantine period went out of it’s was to further refine the art form. Sadly, not many Byzantine artworks survived as the Byzantine period went through several waves of iconoclasm or the act of destroying religious figures. Started by emperor Leo III the iconoclastic controversy was result of the return of the idea that religious figures should not be depicted in art. One of the best examples of the remaining Byzantine art that is still intact are the mosaics of San Vitale in Ravenna. San Vitale Basilica construction of the church was started by Bishop Ecclesius in 526 and was completed in 547. The church’s mosaics depict various stories and figures such as the story of Moses and the sacrifice of

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