Essay on The Motif Of The Good Shepherd

1034 Words Nov 13th, 2015 null Page
The motif of the “Good Shepherd” was first seen in Archaic Greek art. “There the calf bearer was a bearded man offering his animal in sacrifice to Athena” (Kleiner 238). In the pre-Christian world, Christ portrays a shepherd, where he is carrying a calf on his shoulders, but the calf was not to be sacrifice. The calf is one of the lost sheep which symbolizes “a sinner who has strayed and been rescued” (Kleiner 239). Christ said that he is a good shepherd and he will give his life for the sheep. This portrays the youthful Christ as a Savior. In the pre-Christian world, Christ has been viewed as a teacher or a Good Shepherd. He was not recognized as a holy figure until Roman Empire converted their religion to Christianity.
Iconoclasm is defined as the destruction of icons, or images of Christ, the Virgin or saints or a combination of all three. Those who destroyed icons are known as iconoclasts and those who love icons are known as iconophiles. Iconoclasm was a period where the Byzantine Empire lost almost two-thirds of all territory, which includes many icons. There was a persuasion to the emperor that “god was punishing the Christian Roman Empire for its idolatrous worship of icons by setting upon it the merciless armies of the infidel” (Kleiner 270). The Byzantine Era was an era of monotheism. It seems like after iconoclasm, many of the art during the Middle Byzantine era primarily focuses on Christ. For example, icons of Christ as Pantokrator is seen in a lot of churches.…

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