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Studio: international art — 25.1902

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Reviews

well known on this side of the Atlantic ; and a third
also, within the first hour on opening day, became
the property of Mr. Paul Lafleur, a local connoisseur.
Mr. Hope studied in Paris for several years, but
now paints entirely among the forests and pasture
lands of his native country, in appreciation of

CL0CK DESIGNED BY M. VON JUNGWIRTH

EXECUTED BY C, HAGENAUER

which fidelity and excellence he has been, during
March last, elected a Member of the Royal
Canadian Academy.

REVIEWS.

Christian Art and Archaology. By Walter
Lowrie, M.A. (London: Macmillan.) \os. 6d.

net._To the student of the history of the Church

few subjects are more fascinating than the gradual

evolution of Christian Art, which appeals alike to
those interested in the historical and the aesthetic
side of the various questions which present them-
selves for solution. In his exhaustive summary ot
what has recently been discovered, chiefly in Rome,
the fountain-head of Christian archaeology, Mr.
Lowrie throws considerable light on several problems
which have only recently been solved. To take one
notable instance, in his Chapter on the Cross he
dwells on the vision of Constantine, about which
so much difference of opinion has always existed,
and points out that the cause of the confusion is
" that it is not well understood that the monogram
was actually intended to represent the cross, and
whenever during the Constantinian age a monu-
ment is spoken of as a cross, it may generally be
presumed to be in the shape of the monogram."
This monogram, he explains further, owed its
origin in part to a pagan symbol, the sun-wheel,
and he justifies the supposition by reminding the
reader that the Emperor, before the vision to which
he owed his conversion, was much interested in the
sun-worship of the Mithras cult, continuing, more-
over, to the end of his life to confuse it and
the Christian religion. The belief that Constantine
saw a cross in the sky is the result of an erroneous
notion that it was already the symbol of Christianity,
whereas it was not until some time after the
discovery of the true cross by the Empress
Helena, that the instrument of the Lord's death
was represented in art, or accepted by Christians
as the emblem of His Passion.

Another deeply interesting chapter of this fas-
cinating volume is that on the paintings in the
Catacombs, especially the section of it dealing with
the so-called orans or orant. This figure, with
arms outstretched in the attitude of prayer, which
was so frequently introduced in early frescoes, was
originally borrowed from the Jews, but obtained
amongst Christians a new significance, owing to
the fact that it recalled the attitude of Christ
upon the cross. In the account of the gradual
adoption of the symbol of the fish also Mr. Lowrie
says much that is new, or, rather, he collects into
one consecutive narrative all the new light which
recent research has thrown on the subject.

The illustrations in this valuable handbook are
very numerous, and thoroughly elucidate the text, but
it is a pity that they are not on a larger scale, for in
some instances the beautiful and significant details
are lost. In the case of the Catacomb frescoes
great difficulties had, of course, to be contended
with on account of the want of light in the under-
ground chambers containing them, but this excuse

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