Streams of living water: the strigil motif on late antique sarcophagi reused in medieval southern France Public Deposited

Downloadable Content

Download PDF
Last Modified
  • March 22, 2019
Creator
  • Fischer, Elizabeth L.
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Art and Art History
Abstract
  • In this thesis, I argue that medieval viewers understood the strigil motif as a fountain of living water, a sign of rebirth in both Biblical verses and medieval legends. Despite the medieval prevalence of this pattern (a repeated S shape) on reused late antique and newly carved sarcophagi, no in-depth study of the motif exists. In arguing for a richer analysis, I examine strigilated sarcophagi used in the province of Gallia Narbonensis (southern France) from the ninth through thirteenth centuries, drawing on Biblical texts and exegesis, contemporaneous history and hagiographies, and baptismal and funerary rites in my interpretation. When the strigil motif was applied to medieval tombs, it indicated the Christian triumph over death. This was especially true for the sarcophagi of saints, as my thesis shows, since saints' ability to intercede with God on behalf of devotees was trumpeted by the strigils' affirmation of their continuing vigor.
Date of publication
DOI
Resource type
Rights statement
  • In Copyright
Note
  • "... in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in the Department of Art and Art History."
Advisor
  • Verkerk, Dorothy
Language
Publisher
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
Access
  • Open access
Parents:

This work has no parents.

Items