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Article

Bam  

Abbas Daneshvari

Town in the province of Kirman, southern Iran, on an important route skirting the southern fringes of the Dasht-i Lut Desert. The old walled city was founded in the Sasanian period (ad 224–632) and flourished until the 18th century; its ruins stand 0.5 km east of the present town of Bam, founded in 1860. On 26 December 2003, a 6.7 magnitude earthquake struck the city, claiming more than 40,000 lives and destroying over 70% of the buildings. Most of the mud-brick remains of the old city date from the 16th century and later, but they give the best impression available of a medieval Iranian provincial town (see fig.; see also Islamic art, §II, 10(ii)). The site is roughly rectangular (300×425 m) with a citadel in the north-west corner. A vaulted bazaar runs from the main south gate to the foot of the citadel, where there is a large open square flanked by stables; to the west of the square is a caravanserai, a two-storey building with a central court. Within the citadel are the remains of the governor’s residence, his reception room and an open rectangle, which was used in the 19th century for the storage of artillery. A congregational mosque of the standard Iranian type, with four iwans facing a central courtyard, is towards the south-east corner of the site, and to its north are a dozen large mansions built for rich merchants. Their public and private quarters, arranged in two storeys around a central court, are decorated with recesses and mouldings; the service areas with stables and kitchens are plainer. In the north-west section of the site, behind the citadel, are smaller houses, perhaps built for peasants, with individual rooms on one or two sides of a courtyard....

Article

Delia Kottmann

Italian village in Lazio, north of Rome, known for its church. The church of SS Anastasius and Nonnosus is all that remains of the 6th-century Benedictine monastery, which submitted to Cluny in ad 940. Apart from some re-used fragments, the architecture is Romanesque, with a Cosmati pavement in opus sectile as well as an ambo and ciborium. The church is famous for its wall paintings from the first quarter of the 12th century. The apse and its adjacent walls, showing the 24 elders, are influenced by Romano–Christian motifs. Christ in the middle of the conch is flanked by Peter and Paul in a Traditio legis depiction, with a procession of lambs below. Underneath, Maria Regina has to be reconstructed in the middle, between two conserved angels followed by female saints in a Byzantine manner. No Romano–Christian iconography seems to have influenced the vast apocalyptic cycle painted on the side walls of the transept. A band of prophets runs beneath the roof on all the walls of the transept. An inscription in the apse indicates three Roman painters....

Article

R. Nagaswamy

[Cidambara, Chirrambalam (Skt and Tamil: ‘Consciousness as space’)]

Temple site in Tamil Nadu, India, sacred to Shiva in his form as Nataraja, the Cosmic Dancer. The Nataraja temple occupies an area of about 16 ha and consists of a complex series of walled enclosures containing shrines, halls and gateways built between the 12th and 20th centuries. The temple’s origin is ascribed to the sages Vyagrapada and Patanjali, and it has become associated with Appar and other southern saints. The Chola kings, from whose time the earliest surviving portions belong, were devoted to Nataraja and held their coronation ceremonies in the precinct. The active religious and artistic life of Chidambaram continues to the present day.

At the centre of the Nataraja complex are the Chid Sabha and Kanaka Sabha, two small wooden buildings with hipped gable roofs sheathed in copper. While based on earlier prototypes, these structures probably date to the 17th century. Shiva is worshipped here as Nataraja and as the ...

Article

Luca Leoncini

(b Lugnano nel Lazio, 1664; d Rome, Feb 1, 1747).

. Italian scholar, archaeologist and antique collector. His studies and his major writings were devoted to ancient art, and were closely linked with the objects he collected throughout his life. These formed an important collection which earned him great fame, but which was dispersed after his death. It contained small objects and rarities including mirrors, graffiti, lead seals, coins, cameos, lockets and tesserae. The most important piece was undoubtedly the famous Ficoroni Cist from Praeneste (c. 325–c. 300 bc; Rome, Villa Giulia; see Etruscan §VI). One of Ficoroni’s most important studies, published in Rome in 1745, was devoted to his native village, identified with the ancient Labicum. Another of his principal works, Le vestigia e rarità di Roma (1744), was also concerned with topographical matters. Ficoroni was elected correspondent of the Academy of Inscriptions and member of the Royal Academies of Paris and London and the Accademia Peloritana of Messina. He founded the Colonia Esquilina degli Inculti....

Article

Gotland  

Axel Bolvig

Largest island in the Baltic Sea and a province and municipality of Sweden that also includes Fårö, Gotska Sandön and Karlsö islands. The history and economic importance of Gotland is connected to its central position in the Baltic Sea. Culturally it has been compared with Rhodes, Crete and Sicily. Archaeological evidence dating from as early as the 1st millennium bc indicates close interaction with areas as distant as the Indian Ocean as well as a flourishing trade during the Viking age. Throughout the medieval period, the town of Visby attracted many German tradesmen and became a centre of the Hanseatic League. The Danish army invaded Gotland in 1361, destroyed the peasants’ army and extorted large contributions from Visby. Later, Gotland became a centre for pirates and its importance declined. At times it was under Danish control but since 1645 it has been part of Sweden.

Several hundred tombstones decorated during the Iron Age and Viking period are unique to Gotland and offer an insight into a pre-Christian world. During the Middle Ages, 97 churches of great architectural interest were built, and baptismal fonts were widely exported, providing evidence of the area as a centre of intense artistic activity....

Article

Ye. V. Zeymal’

Site in Tajikistan, 25 km west of Dushanbe above the confluence of the Khanaka River and the Kafirnigan River. The pisé walls of the fortress, arched gateways and flanking towers of fired brick, two madrasas and the nearby mosque date from the 16th–19th century, when the fortress was the residence of the Hissar bek. Excavations (1980–82) by Ye. V. Zeymal’ revealed that the fortress was erected on an artificial hill comprising occupation layers dating at least from the 3rd–2nd century bc onwards. The large Tup-khona burial ground containing Yueh-chih and Kushana burials (1st century bc–3rd century ad) was clearly associated with the inhabitants of the Hissar site. Another burial ground near Hissar appears to be earlier than the 7th century ad in date. The tentative identification of the Hissar Fortress with the town of Shuman, mentioned in written sources of the 10th–12th century, has not yet been substantiated by reliable evidence. The site is now a historical and archaeological museum reserve, and the finds are housed in the Tajikistan Academy of Sciences, Donish Institute of History, Archaeology and Ethnography in Dushanbe....

Article

Torbjörn Fulton

[Olaus]

(b Västerås, Dec 12, 1630; d Uppsala, Sept 17, 1702).

Swedish scientist, architect, engineer, historian and archaeologist. He achieved fame as a young man for his treatise on the lymphatic system and later for his botanical research and illustrations. Together with his son, Olof Rudbeck jr, he planned and partly finished a vast series of botanical plates (Campi elysii, c. 1670). He gradually turned to historical and archaeological research, seeking to prove Sweden’s chronological precedence as a centre of high culture. Rudbeck was a professor of medicine, later of botany and anatomy, at the University of Uppsala, where he wanted science to take as honoured a place as theology and law in the university hierarchy. This interest led him to design and supervise the construction of a theatre (1662–3) for anatomical demonstrations, which became an important architectural feature of Kasper Panten’s university building, or Gustavianum (1622–3), for which Panten had remodelled the medieval residence of the archbishops in Uppsala....

Article

[Joannes; Joannis] (Gerhard)

(b Strasbourg, Feb 2, 1621; d Uppsala, March 26, 1679).

Swedish philologist, archaeologist, amateur draughtsman, engraver and miniature painter, of Alsatian birth. In 1647 he was appointed professor at Uppsala University, where he undertook important archaeological research and translations of classical texts, some of which were illustrated with woodcuts after his designs. His Upsalia (1666) is the first Swedish antiquarian topographical survey. Internationally renowned for his study of the Lapps, Lapponia (1673), he also wrote a treatise on the history and technique of painting entitled Graphice id est de arte pingendi (1669); he is reputed to have painted miniatures, but none by him have been traced. His importance in Swedish art history rests partly on his having taught Elias Brenner (1647–1717), the first native Swedish miniature and enamel painter. Schefferus’ De antiquis verisque (1678) was dedicated to Charles XI of Sweden.

Upsalia cujus occasione plurima in religione, sacris, festis (Uppsala, 1666)...