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Article

Asinou  

Susan Young

[Gr. Panagia Phorbiotissa: ‘Our Lady of the Pastures’]

Byzantine church in Cyprus, situated on the west side of the island, 4 km south-west of the village of Vizakia. The church was originally part of the monastery of the Phorbia (destr.), and a marginal note in a synaxarion copied in Cyprus or Palestine in 1063 indicates that the manuscript once belonged to this monastery. The church is renowned for its well-preserved cycles of wall paintings and painted inscriptions, two of which attribute the foundation and decoration of the church to Nicephoros Ischyrios, the Magistros, in 1105–6. A third, damaged inscription mentions a certain ‘Theophilos’ and ‘the people’, who were probably responsible for a programme of redecoration in 1332–3. The wall paintings were cleaned and restored in 1965–8 by Ernest Hawkins and David Winfield under the auspices of the Center for Byzantine Studies at Dumbarton Oaks, Washington, DC.

The church is a single-aisle structure with a semicircular apse and barrel-vaulted nave supported by transverse ribs and engaged piers, forming three blind niches in the north and south walls. In plan it resembles the parekklesion of the Cypriot monastery of St John Chrysosthomos, but it does not have a dome. Although the original walls were of stone mortared with mud, probably in the late 12th century, yellow sandstone of better quality was used for the construction of a domed narthex with north and south absidioles; this arrangement is found elsewhere in Cyprus, at the monasteries of St John Chrysosthomos, and the Panagia Apsinthiotissa. The church was later given a secondary steeply pitched wooden roof of a type common among the Cypriot mountain churches....

Article

A. Dean McKenzie

(fl c. 1290–1311). Byzantine painter active in Macedonia. ‘Astrapas’ (Gr.: ‘lightning’) is a pseudonym, and some scholars doubt that it refers to a particular artist. Although the name Astrapas appears together with the name Michael on the wall painting (1295) in the church of the Mother of God Peribleptos in Ohrid, it is not clear whether the two names belong to one and the same artist or two different people. It is also not possible to distinguish the style of Astrapas from that of Michael and Eutychios who also painted frescoes there. The signature of ‘Astrapas’ as painter appears in the exonarthex of the church of the Mother of God (Sveta Bogorodica) Ljeviška (1307–9) in Prizren, where his work has been associated with that of the so-called ‘Master of the Prophets’. Astrapas has also been credited with the frescoes (c. 1311) in the church of the Ascension in the monastery of Žića, in Serbia. His style of painting is characterized by dramatic composition and lively, lifelike figures achieved through the use of classicizing three-dimensional techniques and a palette of warm colours against dark blue backgrounds. His nationality has been disputed, some scholars believing him to be an itinerant Greek artist recruited from Thessaloniki into the service of the Serbian king ...

Article

Manuscripts describing the layout of the heavens, as prescribed by Classical astronomical theory, and its perceived effect on terrestrial events. This article is concerned primarily with the Western tradition; for information on other manuscript traditions, see under the relevant geographical and cultural articles.

Astrological and astronomical configurations appear in several different types of manuscripts. The most common formula is that of the 12 zodiacal constellations in medieval and Renaissance calendars, where each zodiacal sign is used as the symbol for a particular month (see Calendar). The zodiacal signs are often paired with scenes depicting the related Labour of the Month, a tradition that may be traced back to Late Antiquity. Webster has argued that an early form appears in a Hellenistic frieze (Athens, Panagia Gorgoepikos), in which a row of standing figures representing the Greek months are interspersed at irregular intervals with zodiacal constellations. This kind of image must have been the impetus for such later manuscript illuminations as the zodiacal roundel in the ...

Article

Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....

Article

The architecture of the 8th- to 9th-century kingdom of the Asturias, north-west Spain. European scholars discovered Asturian buildings at the beginning of the 20th century and at first regarded their style as rural and backward, a late survival of Roman architectural styles. Descriptions in contemporary chronicles, however, which correspond closely to the appearance of surviving buildings, make it clear that the survival of Roman architectural techniques enabled the Asturians to construct buildings in a style that anticipated Romanesque architecture in the rest of Europe by almost two centuries.

After the defeat of the Visigothic kingdom by the Muslims at the Battle of Janda (711), the Visigothic people took refuge in mountainous regions, and members of the defeated aristocracy organized resistance to the new rulers. The first and most important of these centres of Christian resistance was organized in the Asturias. By the end of the 8th century a kingdom had been established under the guidance of a small group of clerics who advised the warrior chief, converting him into an authentic king. This ruler was considered the direct heir of the kings of Toledo, the capital of the ancient Spanish Visigothic monarchy. The continuity of the monarchy from Toledo to the Asturias led ultimately to the Reconquest by the Christians in the north of the territory occupied by the Muslims....

Article

Ateni  

Oxana Cleminson

Village on the River Tana, 12 km from Gori in Georgia. It is known for Sioni Cathedral (7th century ad), dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin, which, together with one other small church, is all that remains of the monastery founded there at the beginning of the 7th century. The small domed tetraconch church was built of undressed stone during the reign of King Stephanos II (reg c. 640–50) and rebuilt in the 10th century. In size and plan Sioni Cathedral is very similar to the Jvari Church at Mtskheta. The core of the spatial conception is the dome (diam. c. 10 m), which, together with the church’s other architectural elements, forms a spatial hierarchy corresponding to the descent from heaven to earth. Like the Jvari and the more provincial Dzveli Shuamta in Kakheti, Sioni Cathedral is an example of the pilgrims’ churches that were to become, in the period following the Iconoclastic Controversy (...

Article

Charles Buchanan

Type of large-format Bible, usually found in pandect (single-volume) form, produced in central Italy and Tuscany from around 1060 to the middle of the 12th century. They came out of the efforts of a reformist papacy intent on wresting control over ecclesiastical investiture from the Holy Roman Emperor. The Giant Bibles were produced in reformed canonries and monasteries and then exported to the same, not only in Italy but throughout Europe.

The term ‘Atlantic’ (from the mythological giant Atlas) is derived from their impressive size; dimensions range from 550 to 600 mms by 300 to 400 mms. Their script, derived from Caroline minuscule, is placed in two columns of around fifty-five lines. The texts are decorated with two initial types, which Edward B. Garrison designated as ‘geometrical’ and ‘full shaft’, both of which are derived from Carolingian and Ottonian exemplars, respectively. The iconography consists of full-length prophets, patriarchs, kings and saints as well as narrative scenes. The last are at times found as full-page cyclical illuminations and preface important textual divisions, especially Genesis. The iconography of the Giant Bibles is a specific Roman iconographical recension with its sources based in part on Early Christian pictorial cycles, such as the wall paintings of Old St Peter’s in Rome. These came from an era considered by the reformers to have been uncorrupted by the abuses that afflicted the Church when these Bibles were being made. While the Giant Bibles were promulgated by the Church of Rome as a symbol of its supreme authority, they also allowed the clergy to perform the liturgy, and the Divine Office in particular, properly....

Article

Anne Prache

(b Paris, April 9, 1884; d Paris, Dec 28, 1962).

French art historian. The son of an architect, he graduated from the Ecole des Chartes in Paris in 1907 and became a DLitt in 1921. He was a curator at the Bibliothèque Nationale, then in the department of sculpture at the Louvre, of which he became chief curator in 1940. He taught at the Ecole des Chartes, the Ecole du Louvre, and at the universities of Harvard and Yale in the USA. He presided over the Société Française d’Archéologie for 25 years and was a member of the Académie des Inscriptions et Belles-Lettres from 1934. A specialist in the Middle Ages, Aubert particularly studied the cathedrals of Senlis and Notre-Dame, Paris, Cistercian architecture, and French sculpture and stained glass. He trained a generation of medievalists and above all influenced the study of medieval architecture, especially in his precise analysis of the details of a building in order to establish its chronology. His work on sculpture was more limited, however, because he was interested only in the development of style, not in sources or iconography. Aubert was editor of the ...

Article

Article

M. T. Camus

Church in Saintonge, western France, situated on the old pilgrimage road between Poitiers and Saintes. Towards the middle of the 11th century the church was in the possession of the Benedictine abbey of St Cyprien in Poitiers. It passed to the canons of Poitiers Cathedral between 1119 and 1122, when the decision to rebuild it was probably made. The church was restored in the 15th century (façade strengthened with buttresses) and in the 18th and 19th centuries (masonry repairs by Paul Abadie). Built of limestone, St Pierre has a five-bay aisled nave, a transept with apsidal chapels and a deep apsidal choir. It has slightly pointed barrel vaults. There is no clerestory, the nave and aisles being united under a single roof, which, with the raised aisle walls, results in a triangular west façade. The crossing is surmounted by a beautiful bell-tower.

St Pierre houses Romanesque sculpture of great interest, synthesizing the characteristics of Poitou and Saintonge. Inside, sculptured capitals are confined to the nave and crossing. Carved in deep relief, capitals decorated with masks, animals and monsters alternate with a variety of foliate compositions; there seems to be no clear limit between the real and the fantastic world. One capital carries the inscription ...

Article

Eliot W. Rowlands

[Jacopo d’Avanzi]

(fl 1363–84).

Italian painter . At least two painters of this name were recorded in Bologna: a Jacopo di Pietro Avanzi, who was dead by 1378, and one who was paid for a small commission on 13 April 1384. This has led to much confusion. The earliest reference is to a Iacobus Avancini depintor, resident in 1363 in the parish of S Cecilia in the Porta Piera quarter of Bologna. On 28 February 1375 a Jacopo Avanzi witnessed a notarial act and on 23 June 1377 a Jacopo Avanzi was one of several craftsmen paid for a bishop’s pallium.

A panel of Christ on the Cross between the Virgin and St John (Rome, Gal. Colonna), which may have been the centre of an altarpiece, is signed Jacobus de avanciis de bononia f. and bears the arms of the Malatesta. The figures are monumental and sharply contoured, and the strong colours betray the painter’s Bolognese origin. The emotional portrayal of the figures is direct and convincing....

Article

Aversa  

Manuela Gianandrea

Italian town and comune in the Campania region, near Caserta and north of Naples. Founded in 1029 by Rainulfo Drengot, Aversa turned in a short time from a small village into a key centre of Norman power and culture in southern Italy. It was the first Norman territory in the Mediterranean and still has important monuments documenting its past grandeur, which continued throughout the Swabian and Anjou dominations.

In 1135 the city was expanded by Roger II, King of Naples and Sicily (reg 1130–54; Hauteville, House of family §(1)) who also built the castle in the monumental shape of a castrum with rectangular wings and square towers, later modified by Frederick II, King of Sicily and Holy Roman Emperor. The castle was inhabited by the Angevins, who also founded in 1315 the Real Casa dell’Annunziata, an orphanage and hospice (restored by Luigi Vanvitelli (1700–73) and later transformed into a prison). Oustanding among the buildings built by the Normans is the Cathedral of S Paolo, although its current outline dates to the first half of the 18th century. Prince Jordan I of Capua (...

Article

Annemarie Jordan, Sylvie Deswarte-Rosa, Lucília Verdelho da Costa, Paulo Pereira and Ana Maria Alves

Portuguese dynasty of rulers and patrons (see fig.). After the death of Ferdinand I, King of Portugal (reg 1367–83), the succession was contested by John I, King of Castile (reg 1379–90). The Castilian forces were defeated at the Battle of Aljubarrota (1385) by Ferdinand’s illegitimate half-brother, the Grand Master of the religious military Order of Aviz, who succeeded as (1) John I. He was followed by his son (2) Edward and grandson (3) Alfonso V, under whom Edward’s brother Henry the Navigator (1394–1460) sponsored Portuguese maritime expeditions that were to lead to a golden age of exploration and wealth through trade. Alfonso’s son (4) John II continued the attempts to control the spice trade through the discovery of the sea route to the East. In 1471 John married his first cousin, (5) Eleanor of Viseu. After the death of their son Alfonso (...

Article

Oxana Cleminson

(Vlas’yevich)

(b Mariupol’, Feb 20, 1862; d Leningrad [now St Petersburg], Dec 12, 1939).

Russian art historian of Ukrainian birth. He studied first in Odessa at the Novorossiysky University under Professor N. P. Kondakov and in 1888 followed Kondakov to St Petersburg, where he completed his education. During his university years, together with his fellow student E. Redin Aynalov, he researched the mosaics and mural paintings of St Sophia in Kiev, where his main interest was devoted to their iconography. He received his master’s degree in 1901. In 1903 Aynalov was appointed to a chair at Kazan’ University.

In one of his first works, Mosaics of the Fourth and Fifth Centuries (1895), Aynalov not only gave a very complete survey of the material, but replaced the prevailing theory held by Western scholars concerning a Roman school that was said to have determined the initial history of Byzantine art. Aynalov considered that it was not the West but the East that had been responsible for its stylistic development. He dealt with another of the most fundamental problems of Byzantine art in his monograph ...

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Article

Tania Velmans

Monastery situated on a wooded hill 11 km south of Asenovgrad in Bulgaria. It was founded in 1081 ad by the Georgian donors Grigori and Apazi Pakuriani after they had been granted control over extensive lands in the Rodopi Planina mountains by the Byzantine emperor Alexios Komnenos (reg 1081–1118). The two buildings of art-historical interest are the church of the Holy Archangels and the charnel-house, which lies 400 m east of and below the monastery. The church of the Holy Archangels is a single-nave structure with a dome and an elaborately divided interior. The walls are built of alternating bands of brick and stone, articulated with single-step niches, and there is an elaborate frieze of brickwork meander around the top of the dome’s drum. Numerous restorations have obliterated the original plan of the charnel-house (18×7 m), which has two storeys of single naves with eastern apses and western narthexes. Inside is a series of paintings mostly dated to the late 11th century and signed by ...

Article

Alfonso Rodríguez Ceballos

Spanish family of architects. Juan de Badajoz (i) (b ?Badajoz; d León, 31 Aug 1522) probably came from the region of Extremadura. He worked in León virtually all his life, and his works are exclusively Late Gothic in style. In 1498 he was appointed master builder of León Cathedral, where his most individual work was the chapter library (1505; now St James’s Chapel), an extremely flamboyant example of the Gothic style. In 1508 he was called to Oviedo Cathedral to design the elegant tower (executed by local builders). In 1513 he replaced the semicircular presbytery of the Romanesque church of S Isidoro el Real, León, with a rectangular chapel of more ample proportions, and similar in style to his cathedral library. His son Juan de Badajoz (ii) [el Mozo] (b León, c. 1498; d León, c. 1560) assisted him at León Cathedral, and succeeded him as chief master builder in ...

Article

Gordon Campbell

[Badorfer ware]

Carolingian pottery associated with the German town of Badorf, situated between Bonn and Cologne. Vessels are characteristically decorated with girth grooves. The pottery was widely traded (e.g. examples excavated in 1990 at Flixborough Anglo-Saxon Settlement in Lincolnshire).

W. A. Van Es and W. J. H. Verwers: ‘Le commerce de céramiques carolingiennes aux Pays-Bas’, ...

Article

Scot McKendrick

(fl Arras, 1419–64).

Burgundian painter and tapestry designer. He was a wealthy member of the Arras bourgeoisie and seems to have been a very successful artist. His first recorded work was the painting of mainly heraldic devices in memory of John the Fearless, Duke of Burgundy, at the abbey of St Vaast in 1419. The work was undertaken in such a short time and for a sufficiently large payment that he has been considered the head of an important workshop. In 1426 he was again paid for heraldic painting at Arras, and in 1454 he shared with Jacques Daret the supervision of the painting by Robert de Moncheaux (fl 1454–68) of the tomb of the abbot of St Vaast, Jean du Clercq (untraced).

Bauduin is best known for his execution of the designs for a set of tapestries of the History of Gideon (destr. 1794), considered the most outstanding tapestries owned by ...

Article

Ann McKeighan Lee

Spanish province comprising a group of islands off the eastern coast of Spain in the Mediterranean Sea. Mallorca (Majorca), the largest island in the Balearic archipelago, is c. 3600 sq. km in area. Other important islands are Menorca (Minorca), Ibiza, and Formentera; there are also a number of smaller islands.

Extensive archaeological studies have revealed evidence of an advanced megalithic civilization stimulated by contemporary cultures in Sardinia and Malta (see Sardinia, §1; Malta, Republic of, §II). Bronze Age megalithic structures, variously known as talayot, naveta (or naus), taula, and antigor and constructed of dry masonry with cyclopean elements, are found on Mallorca and Menorca. Although some of the talayoti are rectangular or elliptical in form, most are circular, with inclined walls built with horizontal courses of stones that gradually diminish in size. Classification is divided between the more numerous ‘beehive’ (tholos) type and the corridored type. The ...