Dating icons

394) in which he recounted how he tore down an image in a church and admonished the other bishop that such images are "opposed . When asked by Constantia (Emperor Constantine's sister) for an image of Jesus, Eusebius denied the request, replying: "To depict purely the human form of Christ before its transformation, on the other hand, is to break the commandment of God and to fall into pagan error." After the emperor Constantine I extended official toleration of Christianity within the Roman Empire in 313, huge numbers of pagans became converts.

This period of Christianization probably saw the use of Christian images became very widespread among the faithful, though with great differences from pagan habits.

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On the other hand, Irenaeus does not speak critically of icons or portraits in a general sense—only of certain gnostic sectarians' use of icons.

Another criticism of image veneration appears in the non-canonical 2nd-century Acts of John (generally considered a gnostic work), in which the Apostle John discovers that one of his followers has had a portrait made of him, and is venerating it: (27) "..[John] went into the bedchamber, and saw the portrait of an old man crowned with garlands, and lamps and altars set before it.

The writers mostly criticized pagan works of art for pointing to false gods, thus encouraging idolatry. 430), in his Letter to Heliodorus Silentiarius, records a miracle in which St.

Statues in the round were avoided as being too close to the principal artistic focus of pagan cult practices, as they have continued to be (with some small-scale exceptions) throughout the history of Eastern Christianity. Plato of Ankyra appeared to a Christian in a dream.

306–337) apparently converted to Christianity, the majority of his subjects remained pagans.

The Roman Imperial cult of the divinity of the emperor, expressed through the traditional burning of candles and the offering of incense to the emperor's image, was tolerated for a period because it would have been politically dangerous to attempt to suppress it.They crown these images, and set them up along with the images of the philosophers of the world that is to say, with the images of Pythagoras, and Plato, and Aristotle, and the rest.They have also other modes of honouring these images, after the same manner of the Gentiles [pagans]".According to Lampridius, the emperor Alexander Severus (r.222–235), himself not a Christian, had kept a domestic chapel for the veneration of images of deified emperors, of portraits of his ancestors, and of Christ, Apollonius, Orpheus and Abraham. 130–202) in his Against Heresies (;6) says scornfully of the Gnostic Carpocratians: "They also possess images, some of them painted, and others formed from different kinds of material; while they maintain that a likeness of Christ was made by Pilate at that time when Jesus lived among them.eikṓn "image", "resemblance") is a religious work of art, most commonly a painting, in the cultures of the Eastern Orthodox Church, Oriental Orthodoxy, the Roman Catholic, and certain Eastern Catholic churches.

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