Nashville: T. Nelson,1985. — 179 p. — ISBN-10: 0840775008; ISBN-13: 978-0840775009The history of the catacombs is parallel to the history of early Christianity itself. And James Stevenson traces this crucial era with precision, bringing to light facts which are often misinterpreted or shrouded in legend. (The catacombs, for example, were not sanctuaries for the persecuted faithful.) In this study, we are able to perceive an accurate portrait of the lives - and deaths - of those who participated in the formation of the Church. Stevenson looks at how and why the catacombs were constructed, explores the evolution of these burial sites over the centuries, and shows how they tell of their builders' motives and beliefs. He also explains how the artwork found in these crypts reveals the strong scriptural influences on the fledgling Church. The Catacombs makes fascinating reading for lay person and scholar alike. Its wealth of information is combined with 144 illustrations to comprise an exhaustive yet concise survey of an epochal period in early Christianity.ContentsThe Making of the Catacombs The History of the Catacombs in Antiquity The Rediscovery of the Catacombs The Decoration of the Catacombs The Old Testament and the Catacombs The New Testament and the Catacombs The Burial Places of Heretics and Schismatics Sicily, Tunisia, Naples, Malta The Life and Death of the ChristiansNotes Select Bibliography List of illustrations Index
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