The ancient marbles in the cosmati reuse

/ Dario Del Bufalo. – Estratto da: La Cattedrale cosmatesca di Civita Castellana. Atti del Convegno Internazionale di Studi (Civita Castellana, 18-19 Settembre 2010) a cura di Luca Creti. – Roma: L’Erma di Bretschneider, 2012. – P. 168-184.

I marmi antichi nel riuso cosmatesco Dario Del Bufalo

The lecture by Prof. Dario Del Bufalo looks at the beginnings of the taste for coloured marbles in the Roman Empire: their use, origins, quarries and colours, and in particular the symbolic, political and religious values of some of the key colours in the iconographical transition from Pagan to Christian Rome. Other aspects covered are the re-use of coloured marbles in Late Antiquity; the custom during the Middle Ages to manifest the use of classical spolia with a certain pride, that also demonstrated the “rebirth” of Antiquity; the first anchorites in Egypt and the Islamic tolerance for Christian Monasteries in the Middle East and the old and modern restorations of some Cosmati floors carried out using unrelated coloured marbles, for example the floor in the painting The Ambassadors by Holbein the Younger.

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