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Art History Essay

Satisfactory Essays
Nusrat Kayser

March 18, 2014

Art History Essay

Topic 13

History plays a very important role in the development of art and architecture. Over time people, events, and religion, have contributed to the evolution of art. Christianity has become a very common and well established religion, however, in the past it was hidden and a few people would worship this religion secretly. Gradually, Christianity became a growing religion and it attracted many converts from different social statuses. Christian art was highly influenced by the Greco-Romans, but it was immensely impacted by the establishment of the Edict of Milan in the year 313 AD. The Edict of Milan was so significant that scholars divide Christian art into two time periods, time before and after the Edict of Milan of 313.

The Edict of Milan was proclaimed by the Roman Emperor Constantine after he defeated the Emperor Maxentius at the Battle of the Milvian Bridge. After Constantine’s victory over Maxentius, the Roman senate celebrated by creating an arch at the base of the Palatine, known as the Arch of Constantine. It marvels with the old construction structures of free-standing columns, consisting of the carved reliefs of victories, trophies, and a triple gateway. The Arch of Constantine has circular reliefs representing the sun and moon on the east and west ends. On the keystones of the arches, there were carvings of the river and other gods. A very significant and astonishing aspect of this arch is the historical pattern, called the frieze, that was carved on the sides of the arch representing the ethic and style of architecture of that time period.

The Edict of Milan was a document led to the establishment of religious toleration throughout Rome and brought an end to ...

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...s believed that the statue was created to represent the entire era.

After the Edict of Milan was established, towns went under a slow transformation. Although it continued to focus of urban life, many temples were slowly replaced by Christian buildings. The Emperor highly encouraged Christian art and architecture. Theodosius I, the last Roman Emperor, acknowledged Christianity as the state religion in 380. Art was no longer created secretly underground or hidden inside of churches; it could be displayed openly in front of the public. For the first time, several basilicas were built openly for Christian worship and inside those basilicas, paintings and mosaics of biblical stories were created to be viewed publicly. The Edict of Milan made the Roman Empire become a huge contributor to Christian art and architecture and it created an tremendous revolution in history.
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