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"Transformations of the Phoenix: from the Church Fathers to the Bestiaries"
Joseph Nigg
IKON (Brepols Publishers), 2:2, 2009, 93-102
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"Among all the animals the early and medieval Christians selected to teach religious lessons, the mythical phoenix bears the greatest burden as a symbol of resurrection, the foundation of Christian doctrine. This paper summarizes how the phoenix figure, based in ancient Egypt and developed in Greece and Rome, came to be adopted by the early Church and how it transformed in Christian literature and art from the Church Fathers to the bestiaries of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. Such an overview requires consideration of how the Early Christian phoenix derived from contradictory classical models and how those discrepancies between words and images were combined in medieval bestiaries." - abstract

Language: English


 
ISSN: 1846-8551; DOI: 10.1484/J.IKON.3.33
 
   
 
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