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^Rv OF pmc^

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ih

The Southeast

Cross, Monasterboice.

From

O'Neill's Crossis of Ancient IrcLiiuL

^be Cvom
In

Tradition, History, and Art

BY THE

REV. WILLIAM

WOOD SEYMOUR

Stiff

CruA\

dii})i

volvitur orbis
MOTTO OF THE CARTHUSIANS

WITH ILLUSTRATIONS

PUTNAM'S SONS NEW YORK AND LONDON


G.
P.

XLbe lUiticherbockcr

press

1898

Copyright, 1897
KY
G. P.

PUTNAM'S SONS
London

Entered

at Stationers' Hall,

Ube

mniclterbocltec ipress,

Dew

ffioil!

PUIILISHERS'

NOTE
WiUiam Wood Seyfirst

OWING
The

to the death of the author, the Rev.

mour, shortly after the completion of the

draft

of

the

manuscript of his work, the text of this manuscri[)t did not receive the

advantage of the author's


author's
friend

final revision.

and

literary

executor,

the

Rev.

Thomas

S.

Drowne, had kindly consented book while


it

to give his personal super\'ision to the


of the printers, but in con-

was passing through the hands

nection with his

own long

illness (an illness


in

which resulted

in his

death

some time before the book was


him book
the
to give attention

type)

it

did not prove practicable for

even to the completion of the proof-reading.


as

This

work has been done with

much

care as was practicable in the case of a


left

of so special a character

which had been


author or editor.
literaiy

without the notes or

final instructions of either


It

had seemed both to the

executor and to the publishers

that there would be no warrant for modifying in any

way
it

the author's

conclusions or expressions of opinion.


before the public
in

If

the volume were to be brought

accordance with the author's wish,

was thought
of treatment

essential that the author's

own

point of view and

method

should be adhered to witliout change.


It
it

was further decided by those interested


to take the risk of issuing the

in

the undertaking that


certain inade-

was better

volume with

quacies or imperfections rather than to permit to be thrown


to

away the

labor

which the author had devoted years of


January
/,

his life.

iSqS.

CONTENTS.
PAGE

List of Illustrations

ix

Bibliography

PART
I.

I.

The

Cross before the Christian Era and

in

Prehisi

toric

Times
i.

Section
Section Section
Section
II.

2.
3.

4.

In Aniciica

In Africa In Asia In Europe

....... ....... ....... .......


of the Cross

g
22

34

III.

T\pes of the Cross The Early Form and


Section Section
Section
i.

Use

2.

Voluntary Crucifixion Crucifixion of Children by


Its Fabled Antiquity Traditions Respecting
Cross
its

The Cross of

Punishment

.... ....
Jews
. .

...

46
64

64 79
81

tlie

IV.

Legends of the Cross


Section
Section
i.

2.

Section

3.

Miraculous Appearances of the Cross


Traditionary History

.......
the

.....
Wood
of

83
83

the

93
103

V.

The True Cross and


Section
Section
I.

.114
.

2.

The Discovery of the Cross by S. Helena Traditionary Persons at the Cross


. .

114

.126
134
.

The Title the Cross VII. The Doctrinal Teachine of the Crucifixion
VI.
of

140

VI

Contents

PART
I.

II.

The Cross Early Christian Art The Crucifix Early Christian Art Monograms of Our Lord IV. Rood Screens V. Altar and Reliquary Crosses VI. Cruciform Ornaments VII. Processional Crosses VIII. The Crosier and the Pastoral StafY IX. Pectoral and Absolution Crosses
in
II.

in

III.

X.
XI.

Consecration Crosses

Spire and Gable Crosses XII. Standard Crosses XIII. Memorial Crosses XIV. Sanctuary Crosses XV. Preaching Crosses
XVI. Market
XVII.
Crosses
.

Landmark Crosses XVIII. Wayside, and Weeping Crosses XIX. Mortuary and Burial Crosses XX. Churchyard Crosses
Stnset,

PART
I.

III.

^Varieties of the Cross


in
.

The Cross Heraldry The Cross on Coins IV. The Banner the Cross V. The Color of the Cross Art VI. The Ordeal of the Cross VII. The Adoration of the Cross VIII. Superstitions Concerning the Cross
II.

III.

of

in

Contents

vu

IX.

-The

Si<;n of the
i.
.

Cross

415

Section

Section
Section Section Section
Section

,.

Personal Use of the Sign In IJaptism -In Confirmation the Holy Eucharist
-In

415 422

-In Benediction
-In Ordination

426 429 430


43'

Section
Section Section
I.

-In Prayer

432
433
435 438
441 451

-In Signatures

In Touching for the King's Evil


-Power of the Sign over Devils
.

Section lo

X.- -Puritan Objections to the Cross


XI.- -The Southern Cross

XII.- -Miscellaneous Crosses


Section
i.

456
in

Section Section Section


Section

2. 3.

4.
5.

Noteworthy Crosses History and Nature Ingenious Crosses Cross and Good-Friday Cross Buns The Crown of Thorns
Pile
.

456 463 466


467 468
475

Index

ILLUSTRATIONS
Inscription

Showing

Different

Forms

of the

Tau Cross

'

2
3
3

Ra'

Amon-Ra

Amon

^
.

4
to the

Soul, Bearing a

Crux Ansata, Returning


'
.

Body

4
5

Cross upon Heart Cross on Cake


"
.

6
for the Five Planets

Egyptian Symbols

6
lO
1

Buddha, with Cross on Breast and Hands


Different

Forms

of the Fylfot Cross

"

Hera, or the Assyrian Venus

i6
i8

Assyrian
Sceptre

Winged Globe
at

Knob Found
Found
at

Troy
"

'

21

Earthen Vessels Found at Castione'


Cylinder
Villanova
.

23

24

Found at Villanova Accessory Vase Found at Golasecca


Heads
of Cylinders

24
25
25

Ossuary found

at
'

Golasccca
. .

'

Engraved

Gem

27
27
'

Ancient Gaulish Coins

'"
.

Cross, with the Bust of Neptune,

Found near

Paris

28
31

Cruciform Druidical Temple


Sepulchral

"

Monument
in

at

New

Grange, near Drogheda


at

33
35

Tablet with Cross,


'

Temple
e

Palenque, Mexico "


From Schliemann's Troja. From De Mortillet's La Signe dc la ' From Walsh's Essay on Ancient Medals, and Gems. '" From Gould's Curious Myths. " From Higgins's Celtic Druids. " From Stephens's Central America.
'

From

Hosio's

Aa

Trioiifaute

Ghrioui

Crocc.
'

Croix,
Coif IS,

* *
'

'

From Haslam's Thf Cross and the Serpent. From Sliarpe's The History of Kgypt. From Lundy's Monumental Christianity. From Lee's Glossary of Liturgical Terms. From Layard's Nineveh.

Illustrations

Cross

Found

at

Palenque

'

Chamber at Mitlan Chamber at Mitlan Plan and Section of Sepulchral Chamber at Chila, Mexico Emblems Found in the Mounds in the Mississippi and Ohio Valleys Temple Mound, Lovedale, Kentucky" Temple Mound, Marietta, Ohio
Plan of Sepulchral
'

.....
"
. .
. .

36
38 38
38

Section of Sepulchral

'

42

43

''

44
45

Roman Mound

near Banwell, Wiltshire, England

'

Isaac Carrying the


Sacrifice of Isaac

Wood
.

50
. .

54
54 54
57

The Brazen Serpent The Crucifixion


"

Window

in

Cathedral at Bourges'
.

Crucifixion by Impaling'
Crucifixion on Stauros
'

65 65
'

Crucifixion

by One Hand and Foot

67
.

Crucifixion of S. Crucifixion

Andrew
'

'
.

71

by Tying

72 73
73

The

Crucified

Exposed

to
.

Wild Beasts
'

Crucifixion and Burning' Crucifixion

Head Downwards Crucifixion with Arms and Legs Spread Self-Crucifixion of Matthew Lovat Adam Sends Seth to Paradise for Some of the Oil of Mercy . The Archangel Michael Gives Seth Three Seeds of the Tree
'
.

75

76
80 84
o
85

Life"

Seth Buries

Adam
his

and puts the Three Seeds of the Tree of Life


"

under

Tongue
"

86
"
.

The Three Seeds Spring Up The Crucifixion The Jews Bury the Crosses'
. . '

86
.

87 88
'

"

From From From

Wilson's Mexico.
Squier's Serpenl Symbol in America.

From Twining's Symbols of Ear


Mediceval Christian Art.

and

Blake's

The

Cross,

Ancient and

'

Modern.
*

*
'

'

From Squier's Antiquities of New York and the West. From Jameson's History of Our Lord.

From From From


the

Lipsius's

De

Cruce.

Bartholinus's

De

Cruce Christi.

Veldener's The Legendary History of


Cross,

with Introduction

by

John

Ashton.

Illustrations

XI

The Empress Helena


of the Cross
' .

Setting Forth from Constantinople in Search

89
89
91
lie ena'

The Empress Helena Receiving the Cross The True Cross Restoring a Dead Maid t oLife' A Part of the True Cross Placed in a C lurcl by the Empress
.

91

Passion Flower^

102
'

The Vision of Constantine The Labarum


'
.

104
105

Medal
Medal

of

Constantine

107

of Constantius
'
.

'

107
.
.

Coin of Ptolemy
S.

108

Helena

in

Jerusalem

'

114
115

Discovery of the Crosses

'

Test of the True Cross


S.

'
.

115
in J

Helena Deposits a Portion of the Cross

rusale

119

S. Veronica's

Napkin

at S. Peter's,

Rome
"
.

127 129
131

The Descent from the Cross

Early Representation of the Crucifixion with Thieves

The The

Title of the Cross

'.......
Work
of the

137
141

Crucifixion (Ivory

IXth Century)

Sun and Moon

at Crucifixion

(Ancient Ivory)

142
.

Angels Round Cross (Duccio, Siena)

143

Angels Attending the Crucifixion (Pietro


Adoration of the Cross
(S.

Cavallini, Assisi)

143
145
151

Marco, Florence)

The Cross Imprinted on


Christ Represented as

the

Body"

Orpheus

..... '.....
'

152
153 153
155
.

Triple Cross Representing the Second Person of the Trinity

Representation of Pan Applied to Christ as the

Good Shepherd

Epitaph from the Catacombs


Coin of Crispus
First
*

........
'
.

156
157

Coin with Cross, Issued by Galla Placidia, Vth Century


Fisher's Antiijuitiis at Siraiford-on^

"

From From From From


the

Avon.
*'

Bosio's

Gretser's

La Trionfante e Gloriosa De Sancta Critce.


with
Introduction

Croce.

"^

From Hai-per s Magaziuc. From Jameson's History of Our Lord. From Twining's Symbols of Early and
Medicpval Christian Art.

Veldener's The Legendary History of


Cross,

From Maitland's Church

in the Catacombs.

by John

Ashton.

Xll

Illustrations

Christ Holding a
S.

Gemmed

Cross

'
.

158
S.

Pudentiana, from Fresco in the Church of


in

Pudentiana

158

Mosaic

the Church of S. Maria Maggiore,

Rome
'

160
162

Mosaic

in

the Church of S. Michael, Ravenna

The

Transfiguration

'......
'
.
'

164
165

Crown Angel Changing Crown of Thorns for Real Crown The Lamb as a Symbol of Christ. In the Basilica
Cross Surmounted by

166
of s. Peter's

Rome" The Lamb as a Symbol of Christ. In the Church and Damiano Early Form of Crucifix, from MS. of Vlth Century Crucifix Found in the Catacomb of Pope Julius^
'

........ ......
''

169
of ss.

Cosma
171

'

172
173

Hohenlohe Siegmaringen Crucifix


Back
of

174
"

Hohenlohe Siegmaringen
'
.

Crucifix

175

Early Pectoral Crucifix

176
'
.

Cross of Lothario (IXth Century)

177
.

Adam
Mary

at the

Foot of the Cross


'
.

'
.

178

at the Cross

Anubis-Christos

'.......
"
.

180
iSr

Identity of Heathen and Christian Symbols


"
.

188

The Labarum Monograms of the Saviour Monogram of the Three Emblems Carried in Various Crosses of the Greek Form Greek and Latin Crosses of Various Forms Monogram in the Lapidarian Gallery, Rome
'
.
'

".....
the Mysteries
. .

188
188 188 189

189
"

Mystic Cross

A A
'

Cathedral Screen
Parochial Screen From
Bosio's
/.ti

'........ ......
' "
.

191 191

194

196
e

Trionfaiite

Gloriosa

"^

From Didron's
the

Christian

Iconography

or
the

Croce.
"

History

of

Christian

Art

in

' *
'
^

From Ciampini's Vetera Monimeitta. From Jameson's History of Our Lord. From Tanieson's Legends of the Aladonna. From King's The Gnostics. From Jennings's The L'iosicriicians, Their
Kites atid Mysteries.

Middle Ages.
'
'

From Maitland's Church in the Catacombs. From Pugin's Treatise on Chancel Screens and Rood-Lofts.

Illustrations

XIU
PAGE

Iconostasis at

Tcpekcrman
in

' .

197

Marble Screen

the Cluirch of the

l'"rairi,
''

Venice''

198

Screen and Rood-Loft, Hospital, Lubeck

200
206

Maximianus Welcoming Justinian


Reliquary of Orvicto,

'

XlVth Century
*

'
.

208 210 213


ury

Bronze Crucifix, Xllth Century


Ciborium, B\zantine,

End

of

XI\'th Centurj-"

Monstrance
Monstrance

".......
of Sedletz Castle,

Bohemia,

XVth Ccn

214
215

Monstrance: German Example

of the
'
,

X\'Ith Centu ry"

216 216
217
218 218

Sceptre Surmounted by the Cross

Crown

of

Charlemagne

English Crown

Crown Crown

of Austria

....... '......
"
.

of Reccesvintlius,

Vllth Century

'

219
220
222

Brooch of Silver Filagree


Crucifix

Work
'
.

(Date Uncertain)
.

Made from

an Old Sixuiish Hilt

Sword

Hilt,

XVHth

Dr. Donne's Seal


S.

"......
Century
".
"
.

223
225

Augustine's Interview with Ethelbert

227
228

Processional Cross
Processional Cross

'
.

229
231

Processional Cross

Processional Crosses

Ancient Processional Cross, Circa 1400


Crosier "
Crosier

"..... .......
'
.

233

"

234
237
238

Tau-Shaped Pastoral
Pastoral Staff
"

Staff of

Carved Ivory, Limbu

239

240
241
'

Pastoral Staff
'

"

From

Neale's //isloiy of the Holy EasUrii


Treatise on

From

Lee's Clos.sary of Liturgical

and Ec-

Church.
'

cUsiastiail 7

ms.

From

I'ugiii's

Chancel Screens

"

' *

'

and Rooil-Lofts. From Ciampini's Vetera Monimenta. From I.aliarte's Handbook of the Arts of the " Middle Ages and Renaissance. From Wheatley's Art Work in Gold and
Silver.

From Berry's Heraldric Encyclopedia. From Walton's Complete Angler. From an old print. From Paley's Manual of Gothic Architecture. From Glossary of 'j^erms Used in British
Heraldry.

XIV

Illustrations
PAGE

Pastoral Staff with

Knob
'

' . . .

Forms
Cross

of Pateressa

242
'
.

Pastoral Staff of S. Boniface

Worn by One
B.C.
1

of the "

Seven Chiefs against The bes,' Circa


250

200

'

Cross

Worn by Samsi-Vul Museum


in the

*......
IV.,

King

of Assyria,

B,

C Sj 5.

B ritish
251

Mosaic

Oratory of

S.

Venantius,

Byzantine Pectoral Cross

....

Rome

''

252

Queen Dagmar's Cross


Exterior Cross
'

'

Cross of the Knights Templars

Consecration Crosses
Spire Cross

...... "..... ".......

256
258

Crosses on Gables

262
'"

Front of Stone at Aberlemmo, with Cross

266
'

Crosses in Isle of Man Bearing Runic Inscriptions The North Cross, Clonmacnoise " The Southeast Cross, Monasterboice "
.

268

269

Drumcliff Cross

'"......
.

273

Geddington Cross "

280
"
.

The Queen's Cross, near Northampton Waltham Cross Waltham Cross Abingdon Cross
Charing Cross

.... "... ....


"
.

282
283

284

2S6
286 290
295

Frithstool, Beverley Minster


S. Paul's Pulpit Cross
"

'

'^

From Rock's Church of Our Fathers. From Neale's history of the Holy Eastern
Church,

From From

Lee's Glossary of Liturgical

and Ec-

clesiastical

Terms,

Parker's

Companion

to

Glossary of

'

From Twining's Symbols of Early and


ditEval Christian Art,

A/e-

Terms Used

in Gothic Architecture.

From

Brock's

The

Cross

Heathen

Christian,
*

'" From Fergusson's Kude Stone Monuments. and " From O'Neill's Crosses of Ancient Ireland. '^ From O'Neill's Fine Arts of .Ancient Ire-

''

From Ciampini's Vetera Monimenla. From Labarte's Handbook of the Arts of Middle Ages and Renaissance, From Stephens's Queen Dagmar's Cross.

land,
the

" From Britten's Architectural Antii/uities. " From Holland's Cruciana.

Illustrations

xv
i'A(;k

S. Paul's

Cross

'

297

S. Paul's Cross,

Time
"

of

Latimer
' .

'

299
303

Preaching at

S. Paul's

Cross

Rercdos

in S.

Paul's

304
305

Pulpit Cross at Iron-Acton, Gloucester


Blackfriar's Pulpit, near Hereford
'

306

Gloucester High Cross

"

309
'

Market Cross

at

Cheddar

310
*
. . .

Cross at Chichester, Sussex

3ii

Winchester Butter Cross

-312
313

Mercat (Market) Cross as Restored


Salisbury Market Cross
. .

in
.

1885
.

'

Cross of Stourhead

-315 .316

Devizes Market Cross

'

The High

Cross, Formerly in the Market-Place at Wells

Cross at Inverary

Tottenham Cross
Wayside Cross
"
in

the Alps

Ampney

Crucis," near Cirencester

".......... .......... "........ ......


'
. .

.318
325
},2'j

328

329
335

Stone

Coiifin of

Llewellyn, Prince of Wales.

Stone Coffins with Cross on Lid Stone Coffin-Lids


'
.

'".......
In Llaiirwst
".

Church

336
337 338

Stone Coffin-Lids

Headstone Cross

in

lona
'"

339

Cross on Headstones

339
"

Grecian Headstones

340
Cross, Grainthorpe Church,
. .

Head and Base


Brass Effigy of

of a

Monumental Brass
"
. .

Lincolnshire

-341
.

Thomas

Cranley, Archbishop of Dublin and War''


.

den of
'
''

New

College Chapel, Oxford


'

342

^ * '

From an old print. From a photograph. From Pooley's Old Crosses of Gloucestershire. From Britton's Architectural Antiquities. From Arnold's History of the Cross of Edinliurgh.

'"

"

From Boutell's Christian Momoiioits in England ami Walfs. From Cutts's Manual for the Study of Sepulchral Slabs and Crosses. From Neale's History of the Holy Eastern
Church.

*
'

From Pooley's Old Stone Crosses of Somerset. From Bishop's Eictoriiil Architecture. From Holland's Cruciana.

^'

From

Boutell's

JMonumental

Brasses of

England.

XVI

Illustrations

Monumental Effigy of a Crusader Inscriptions in Catacombs


^
.

'
.

Cemetery Cross

at Saillans

(XVIth Century)
' .

'

Cemetery Cross

at Marcillac

Cross at Gcorget

".....
From
a Fresco in th
' '
.

Cross Quartered with the Four Gospels.

Catacombs
Christ,

Armed Limbo

with the Cross of Resurrection, Descending into


.

'

Lorraine or Jerusalem Cross

Greek Cross, with Double Cross Arms (Xlth Century)


Inhabited Cross, Florentine, 1491
"

'

Cross of

S.

George
'
.

Cross Potent

Jerusalem Crosses

Tau Cross

''

Saltire Cross

'

Calvary Cross
Cross Botone Cross Patonce
^

'

Cross Fleury

''

Patriarchal Cross

Cross of S. James
Cross

Pommee
*

''

Cross Avellane Cross Pattee

'

Maltese Cross
Cross Moline Cross Milrine
''

'

'

Cross Ancree
Cross Barbae

'

'

Cross Ancettee
Pall Cross
'

'

From From

Cutts's Manual for the Study of Scpulchral Slabs and Crosses.

'

From Drouyn's Croix From Didron's

de Procession, de Ci-

melieres et de Carrefours.
*

Kip's Catacombs of Rome.

Christian Iconograpliy.

'

F'rom Newton's Display of Heraldry.

Illustrations

XVII
I-AGE

Merchants' Seals

'

373
'

Sculptured Monograms

373 375

Roman

(Juincunx

"

Coin of Constantine

'

376
'

Coins of Constantius

377
378

Coin of Nerva

"

Coin of \'alcntinian Coin of Gratian


''

'

378

379 379 379 380


'

Coin of Theodosius

Coin

of Justinian
'

"

Coin of Phocas

Coin of Hcraclius

380
381
'
.

Crosses from Anglo-Saxon Coins

Pennies of William the Conc[ueror a nd William Rufus

382

Labarums from the Catacombs

383
383

Labarum from

Coin

'

Coin of Constantine
Coin of Justinian
'

384 384
386
'
.

The
S.

Carroccio

Endicott Cutting the Cross from the King's Banner


George's Flag
"

390
391

Banner of the Spanish Inquisition

393

The Adoration of the Cross The Conversion of S. Hubert


S.

"

398
'

406
.

Eustace

'

407
"

Stigmata of

S.

Francis of Assisi

411
'

The Cross
Power
Medal
of

as a Posture in Prayer
"

433

of the Cross over Devils

Luther
of of

"...
'
.

439
443

Coat of

Coat of

Arms Arms

Luther

444
'

Melanchthon

444
'

'

^ ^

From Newton's Display of Heraldry. From The Art yournal, From Gretser's De Sancta Crucc. From Walsh's Essay on Ancient Medals, and Gems.

From

Lee's Glossary

of Liturgical and Ec-

clesiastical
^

Terms.

Coins,

'

'
'

From Holland's Criiciana. From an old print. From Jameson's Sacred and Legendary Art. From Maitland'^ Church in the Catacombs.

XVll!

Illustrations

The Southern

Cross

'

451
'

Black Cross of Abingdon

45S
''

Magnified Scales of the


Cross- or Star-Spored

Minnow
'

460

Fungus

460
461

The Cross in Flowers Snow Crystals


'

...
'

462 463
*

Crystallization of a

Tear-Drop

Croce Angelica
Acrostic of
'

Tomasa de Aquins Raban Maur


di S.
. .

463
.

464

From Crowther's The Starry Cross. From Palmer and Crowquill's Wanderings of a Pen and Feticil.

'
"*

From The Art yoiirnal. From Holland's Crttciana. From Maur's De Laudibus Sancts

Crucis.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

BIBLIOGRAPHY
A
Kempis, Thomas. So mm a I.)
Concio

Serm

/?<

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London, Glasgow, and Edinburgh, l88l. Mackay, A. B. The Glory of the Cross. London, 1S77. Macintyre, J. J. The Cross and the Crescent as Standards in War. London, 1854, Maitland, C. The Church in the Catacombs. [Earliest Forms of the Cross.] London, 1846.
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Malan,

C.
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Bibliojj^raphy
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xxvii

Martyr,

Melanciithon, Ph.
Mencki'.nO.

Diatribe de

Menken, Gottfr.

Loc </< calamilatibus ct de Cruce, et de veris consolationibus. Monogrammate Christi. I.ips., 1734. Ucbcr die eheme Schlaiige und das symbol. Vcrhdltniss drrselben
"Jestt

ziir

Per-

son tind Geschichte

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1S12.

Merillivs, Emundus.

Not.r philologicu-

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Roteroil., if>93.

MkRMANNUS,

a.
H.

De

Veneratione

ss.

Reliqiiinrum.

De

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Lovan., 1566.

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MoNTF.\uc<iN,

Antiquity Explained and Represented in Sculptures.

meine Christi zu
MUEI.I.ER, L.

St.

A/arien in Rostock in zioeijiihrigen Bett-Stunden


Frankf.,
if>6S,

get'ffnet.

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Ueber Sterne, Kreuze, und Krcise Copenhagen, 1S64.


F.

ah

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MUENTER,
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Sinnbilder
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P. J.

Bemerkungen

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Frankft.-a/M., 1867.
nostri

MOl.I.ER,

IL

Historia passionis, erueifixionis et sepultum

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Rostoch., 1661.
Jlal.,
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Muratori, L. Ant.
Mussafia, A.
Mysth-e de
la

Diss. 21,

De

Cruce Nolana (Antiqu.

Sulla legenda del legno delta Crocc.

Vienna, 1870.
et

Croix affligeante

et consolante,

mortiftante et 7'ivifiante, huiniliante

triom1732.

phante, de fesus-Christ et de scs Membres.

Par un disciple de

la

Croix de Jesus.
des

Nouv.
jfesti

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Lausanne, 1791.

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German

Das Geheimniss

Kreuzes

Christi

und seiner

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Newton, W.
NiCET.t;,
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Display of Heraldry [chap,

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Paphlag.
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Nicquetu.s.
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Sanctte Crucis, seu historia et


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mysterium

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NiHtisius, B.

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NiSBET, A.

System of Heraldry, Speculative and Practical : with the true Art of Blazon, according to the most approved Heralds in Europe [chap. xv. Of the Cross, and its acci,

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Olearius, Jon.
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1 1
.

Christliche Geduldschule

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Illustrations

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Ireland,

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Owen,

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Old Stone Crosses of the Vale of Clwyd and Neighboring Parishes.

PacIANDI, p.
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De

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XXX
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PART

1.

THE CROSS
IN

TRADITION. HISTORY,

AND ART

CHAPTER
TIMES
Section
I.

THE CROSS BEFORE THE CHRISTIAX ERA, AND

IN PRE-HISTORIC

III

Africa.

Section

2.

Section ^.

In Asia. Section j. In Europe. America


/;/

human

w
It is

HAT

is

now

called the Christian religion has existed

among
i.e.,

the ancients, and was not absent from the begiiming of the

race until Christ

came

in

the flesh, from which time The

True,

the

the true religion, which existed already, began to be called

Christian, Religion before Christ.

Christian."

'

These words
intention
is

of S.

Augustine are the keynote of

this chapter.

Its

to

show that among


rites,

other traces of the true religion, prelias

served in traditions,
all

and symbols, God

handed down through

ages a prophetic type of the cardinal truth which was indissolubly


in,

connected with, and not only revealed


well

the Atoning Sacrifice. imthe

parted to
principal

known that the leading truths of the primeval religion man by his Creator, in Paradise, may be traced through
of

pagan mythologies; and that a symbol

the fundamental

article of the Christian

creed and hope has been recognized as sacred

in

the very earliest records of antiquity,

acknowledged as holy by
of Calvary,

nations

who

lived long before the Sacrifice

removed from the " chosen people,"


oracles of

to

whom
i.,

and were far were committed " the


in

God

"; reverenced
'

in all ages,

and by nations
13.

every stage

S. Augusline, Kctrncl.,
I

History of the Cross


God never come from the

of civilization from the lowest to the highest; in a word, that


left

Himself xvithout a
east
"Atone-

ivitness

among men,

that

many

"shall

and from the west, from the north and from the south,
shall sit

The Leading
Point,

and
the

down with Abraham and


ot

Isaac and Jacob in


,

ment," Universal.

kingdom
It

bod.

his tact has

been almost unnoted.


it

And
is

yet

it is

universal.

In every kind of relic which time has spared,


is

clearly to be read.

graven on rocks and monoliths, painted upon

the walls of temples and tombs, enamelled upon vases and sepulchral
urns,

stamped upon coins and medals, moulded

in

ornaments and

amulets, used as a talisman upon the humble hearth, and traced in the
plans of the dwelling-places of the Deity, whether subterranean or superterranean,

whether formed

in

the earliest

mounds and

rudest
in

caverns of the rock, or

the

ornate and grand cathedrals and

minsters which
skill of

the piety and

the Middle

Ages have

bequeathed to our times.


Section
us
i.

In Africa.

Let
which
paterto

examine

first

the testimony

of Egypt,

the mother of art

and
Cross

of civilization, a land

traced
in

its

Egypt.

nity

direct!}'

Menes

or Mizraim, the son of

Ham,
years,

the son of Noah.


for

Here,
of

unchanged

thousands

we

find

among
The

her most

sacred hieroglyphics the cross in

various forms.
Inscription showing different forms of the Tau Cross,

simplest,

From

Bosio's

La

Trionfuiitf e Gtoriosa Croce.

with four arms of equal length

placed erect,

+,

or like an

but the one


is

known

specially as the " Cross of Egypt," or the

Tau

cross,
it.

shaped
this

like the letter T,

often

with

circle

or

ovoid

above

Yet

mystical symbol was not


S.

peculiar to this country, but


29.

was

Luke

xiii.,

Before the Christian Era


reverenced as " the hidden wisdom "

among
in

the Chaldeans, Phteiiicians,

Mexicans, and every ancient people

both hemispheres. been variousl\- intcrpictcd.


it

In Mi^yplian hicro_L;l\'phics the cross has

When

with four ecjual arms, sometimes formed of serpents,


to be an

has been
,j^ interpretat. on.

assumed

emblem

of the

four elements.
circle at

When

composcil of two or four sceptres with a


of intersection
it

the point

is

said to indicate " dixiiic potentialit\'. "

The simple

cross has been intL-rpreted as meaniiiL;" " sup|)nrt," or " Saviour," some times " avenger," and " protective power " " but wlien the circle, the
' ;

emblem

of eternity,

is

placed upon

it,

forming the crux an-

TheCrux

sata, its signification,

which also
is

pler forms of the cross,

is implied often in the sim" Life to come." To this interpretation the

early

Christian

historians bear witness, and their

statement has been

confirmed
ants.'
fore,

by modern

sav-

The cri(x iii/strfa.thercis

the insei)arable
of

ac-

companiment
triail

the

chief

of the

Egyptian

deities,

Ra, v\mon-Ra, and

Anion,

who

are represented as hold-

ing in one hand the crook,


or crosier-like staff, the

symand

bol

of

powei',

{)eace,

purity,

and

in

the other the


*

sacred Tau."
significant

It is

very

that

the second
is

person,
Ra.

Amon-Ra,
throne,

gener-

Amon-Ra.

ally represented as seated up- From Haslana's 7V;,- Cross >,J The Serpent,

From Haslam's The Cross on and the Serpent.

wearing the

pharaoh crown, with outstretched arms offering


/.

to his worshipper the cross and the crosier,


eternal
life

c,

and peace.
dit

The

ancient Egyptians believed that he had two


torn,
ii.,

ChampoUion. Preeis
Rufinus,
lib.
ii.,

Systeme Hierog,,

nos. 277, 34S, igi.

'

Slip. Eneyclop. Brit., vol. iv., p. 66, no. 108.

cap. 3g

in HieroglypJiics, p. 156;

Sozomen. lib. ChampoUion, Precis,


;

iii.,

cap.

15, etc.

Young, Recent Discoveries


vol.
ii.,

etc.,

277;

Layard, A'ineveh,

p.

213.

For another
*

interpretation, considering the circle as the apple, see infra note, p. S.


ii.,

Wilkinson, Ancient Egyptians, vol.

p. 2S3.

History of the Cross


natures, divine and

human,

that he

was

their defender against evil,

and

also the inspirer of counsel

and wisdom.

Nor

is

the crux ansata con-

fined to the superior deities;

the inferior also frequently

bear

it.

For instance, we
it

find the

goddess of Truth preif

senting
life

to the figure of the Sun, as


is

intimating that

of

which the sun

the source
is

and truth are eternal.


Some-

The crux ansata


living spirit,

placed, to indicate the ever-

on tombs and sarcophagi.

times

it is

in

the talons of a conventional figure,

representing the soul, bearing a


the
the

human head and


and protecting
deities are frein their

body

of a bird, hovering over, of the departed.

body

The

quently depicted holding the sacred Tau


mouths,' or presenting or receiving
lii:)s

it

from the

of ad\"ing man,'' \\\\o

is

often lying on a lion-

shaped couch.

A
'""',

most decisive proof


this

of

the meaning atat the de-

tached to
From Haslam
and of
s

hierogram was given


at

The Cross

struction

of

the Serapeum

Alexandria, the

the Serpent.

shrine of

the gigantic emerald, or glass, statue

Serapis,

the god of healing, which

Crux Ansata in the Temple of


Serapis.

had

bccn

brought,

by

Order of

Ptolemy Soter,
shore
re-

from Sinope on the southern


of the Black Sea
(B.C.

293),

and

erected

within

the labyrinth

on the
this idol,

banks of Lake Moeris.

Upon

and upon the walls

of the temple,

was

engraved the crux ansata.


destroyed
it

Theodosius
despite

(A.D.

389),

the
Soul, bearing a Crux Ansata, returning to
the bodv.

earnest prayers of the Egyptian priests


for its preservation,
'

because

it

was the
soul

As

a passport for the soul.

That the

superstition retained from the time of the ancients to the present day.

was exhaled from the mouth of the dying, is a It was believed among

the common people in the last century that the soul could be seen, in semblance of a light-blue smoke, passing from the lips. Hogarth, it will be remembered, in his last painting, represents Time prone on his back exhaling a puff of breath that curls from his mouth bearing the word ' Sir R. Ker Porter, Travels, vol. ii., p. 415. Finis.
^

Sharpe, Vocabulary of Egyptian Ilicrogliphs, no, S33.

Before the Christian Era


symbol
of their god,

and

of " Life to

come." Some Christians who underthis,

stood the Ks^yptian hieroglyphics confirmed the interpretation, and


together with a tradition
that

when
onl_\-

this

figure

of the cross

shoLild

appear their religion would come to an end, induced


to embrace
Christianity.'

Not

the priests,

many of who were

the pagans
intelligent,

were converted, hut we are told that

fiom every house

tlie

bust of

Serapis was removed and the cross substituted.^

The
crosses

Ciiristians not only accepted the c?-/ix aiisata as the


it

symbol

of

their faith, but used


in

and the Tau

in

place of the Latin and Greek


Besides,
in

their

clun'ches

and elsewhere.

The Crux Ansata


Adopted by
Christians.

Christian inscription at I'hile

may

l)e

seen both the Maltese

and Egyptian El-Khargeh


in

crosses.

In the church of the cemetery of

the Great Oasis arc other examples.'


is

Even

in the desert

to the east of the Nile

a church with the following inscription:

KAeO^AIKH+EKKAH>^CIA.
At Edfou
also,

the cross

is

painted upon the walls, with an inscripof the Christians."


'

tion, perhaps, of later date, "

The Cross
chief

As among many
the Egyptians.
little

other nations, the cross was worn as an amulet by

Sometimes the

ornament of the necklace was a


Cross Worn apparently as ^" Amulet.

image of
,
, .

Amon-Ra
,

with a Tau cross upon th^ back;

sometimes the emblem was tattooed or painted upon the

arms and thighs, as represented


Belzoni
in

... in the
is

paintings found by

the tombs of Thebes.

A significant svmbol
It

the long cross surmounting a heart.

J
cap. 29.
'

of

means " good," or" goodness." Upon the front of many the houses in Thebes and Memphis it is cross Surmountis

depicted, intimating, " This


o-Qod."
'^

the abode of the

'"^^

Cross upon Heart.

Pharisaism,

it

seems, existed long before the advent *'


. .

of

Him whose

type we are considering.


v.,

'Socrates, Hist. Eccles.,

lib.

cap.

17; Sozomen,

lib.

viii.,

cap. 16; Rutinus, lib.

ii.,

Fleurj',

EicUs. Hist.,

.\ix.

29.

' S.

Baring-Ciould, Curious
xii.

Myths of

the

Middle Ages,

vol.

ii.,

p.

93

Hoskin. Visit

to

the

Great Oasis, plate

See Wilkinson's Ancient Egyptians,


p. 392.

vol.

ii.,

pp, 283-284, for use of

Tau

cross in Christian
*

liradford,

monuments. American Antiquities,

History of the Cross


The
sacred bulls and reptiles were fed upon a cake
oil.

composed

of flour,

honey, and milk, or


Cross on Cake.

All symbolical materials,


patte'c ;

upon which was imhigher

pressed a cross

and on the

festivals tlie priests

and worshippers partook

of

it.'

This crossed cake was the hieroglyph for " civilized


in
t

land," but
1

that rude character there

was a deeper mysti-

Cross on Cake.

cal reference to Paradise.

1-2
the

From Haslam's
y-/,,,

^ross

and

The

invention of

astronomical signs

is

generally

''''"'

^'^''J''"'^-

attributed to Egypt, but those used


, . Astronomical
. ,

by the ancient Greeks, BabylonIndia and of America, so closely


.'

ians, Druids, the natives of

^s"^-

resemble them that they indicate a

common

origin.
it,

Five

of these characters are plainly

composed

of the circle, or parts of

and

the cross

Egj'ptian Symbols for the Five Planets.

From Haslam
filled

'J /it-

Cross

aiiil

Ike Serpent.

while that of the earth, the circle


these hieratic

with the cross,

is

significant.

In

monograms the

position of the cross varies,

sometimes

at others below or at the side of the disc, hence it has been supposed that the position not only " distinguished one sphere

being placed above,

from another, but also indicated the degree of happiness

in

each."
in

The

signs of Jupiter, Venus,


of the corresponding

and Mercury are sometimes placed


Egyptian
deities,

the

hands

Ra, or Osiris,

Isis,

and

The monogram of the last is a variation of the caduceus or mystic wand of Mercury, and, according to Kircher, was originally the
Hermes.
sacred Tau, to which was added the cross and crescent, modified after-

wards by Thoth, the Egyptian Mercuiy, into serpents and wings, sym'

An
The

evident type of the Eucharist.

Similar types were found in Asia and in .'\merica,

both on the North and South continents.


''

See

ch.

ii.

tradition of the four rivers of Paradise flowing towards the cardinal points,

thus

dividing the land cruciformly has been handed

down

in

many

mythologies.

In the Sineru of

and from its roots gush forth from the four sides of the golden Mount Meru ;n the Slavratta, or "celestial earth" of the Hindoo, proceed the four primeval rivers. The Tien-Chan, or " celestial mountain land " of the Chinese and Tartars, is
the Buddhist, grows the four-limbed Damba-tree, or tree of
life,

four sacred streams northward, southward, eastward, and westward

divided by the four overflowing streams of Tychin, or Immortality, and through Asgard, the

abode of happiness of the Scandinavians, flowed four rivers of milk.


'

Edinburgh Rev.,

vol. cxxxi., p. 23S.

Before the Christian Era


bolizing the

7
called theTaiitic

power
the

of the cross over the devil.'

Hence

jft,

emblem,''

is

sitjn

of power, and Mercury always bears the caduceus


its

when

conductintT a soul to Hades, for by


liv'ing

touch the god could release


it

the spirit of the

or recall the dead to life; like the cross, also,

had power over enmity.

By

its

influence, enemies found their hatred

changed

to love.

How
power.

to account for the peculiar shajie of the crux ansata passes our
Its universality

it

is

found
it

in

every quarter of the earth


Crux Ansata.

attests the reverence in

which

was held by the primeval

nations,

but as Haring-(i<Tuld confesses, " no one knows,


will

and probably no one ever


it

know, what originated

this sign

and gave

such significance."'

It

has been suggested that the

represents a
'

table or an altar,
altar,

and the ovoid symbolizes a vase,* or an egg


it

upon that

others suppose

to be a

mere handle, because

it is

often so used,

but not always.

On

a Babylonian cylinder the god holds the sacred

emblem

b)-

the long arm, whilst a priest offers him a gazelle."

On

a stele

from Khorsabad the two parts are disjoined,


the circle
in his right

an eagle-headed man holds


hand.'

and the Tau

in his left

This was affixed to

the end of the pole of a war chariot, doubtless as a talisman.

An

able writer suggests that in the

first

instance the crux ansata was

intended to denote the solar and terrestrial spheres respectively, and,


subsequently,
idea of ruling
'

when

princes and conquerors had conceived the exalted


right,
20,

by divine
lib.

or of pretending a divine origin, each


in

Kircher.
its

Hicros;.,

iv.,

quoted

Deane's

Serpent Worship,

p.

133.

"The
life
;

caduceus in

present form represents a modification of the universal Ophite hierogram, em;

blematic of the Trinity

the circle for light, the serpents for wisdom, and the wings for
title

signs corresponding to the


Serpent, p. 173.

Trismegistus, or thrice great Hermes."

Haslam, Cross and

' The monogram of the Egyptian Tau is formed of three Taus thus, f-' Masonic jewel of tlie Royal Arch. Maurice, Indian Antiqttities, vol. vi., p. .also compose the symbol of the Scandinavian Teutates. ^ Curious Myths, vol. ii., p. 94.
"

-)

similar to the

6S.

Three Taus

Ungarelli, Interpretat. Obeliseorum I'rhis, p.

5.

'

Dognee, Les Syniboles Antiques-C CEuf.

The " Mundane egg


it

"

is

often represented with a

two cones. The space outsiile and around the figure symbolizes heaven, boundless as is the universe " the space within the upper cone, above the line which represents the earth's surface was the HoiXoi or coelus, the hollow vault, 'the fertile womb of all teeming nature' and the space below the line and within the lower cone was the region of fire, the abode of the mysterious spirits." Haslam,
horizontal line passing through the middle dividing
into
; . . .

Cross
' '

and

Serpent, p. 72.
vol.
ii.,

Curious Afyths,

p. g6.
ii.,

Botla, Afon. de A'ineve, vol.

pi. 158.

8
adopted the
circle,

History of the Cross


and, associating with
it

the equally expressive cross,

the two conjoined thus became emblematical of dominion; and this

symbol

of royalty has
in

been perpetuated to our day by every Christian

potentate
cross
is

Europe, whose coronation orb surmounted by a pectoral

nothing more than the embodiment of the crux ansata.^

Kircher mentions a curious tradition that Thoth received the sign

from which he formed the crux ansata from the patriarchs.


received by
Tradition of
its

"

It

was

Moses from Shem. who received


it

it it

from Noah,
from Seth,

Transmission from Angels.

who who

rcceiv'ed

from Enoch, who received

received
it

it

from Adam, who received


first

it

from the angel

Raziel,"

who gave

to our

father as a talisman of great

power
'

against demons, etc. (Abeneph).

McCulloch, quoting the above, inquires


a

"

Who

is

'

Abeneph

If

Jew

or a

Mahometan, and

his

name would

give color to that opinion,

then his testimon\- would be of great value as to the mysterious signification of the cross in very ancient times.
It is

not likely that a follower

of Judaism,

or Islam,

would invent a tradition honoring a Christian

symbol."

'

From Egypt
must not look

the reverence for the cross doubtless spread throughout

the other parts of Africa, but, owing to the low state of civilization,
for

we

monumental evidence, but


vain

to traditionary usages pre-

served to the present day, for traces of the ancient use of the hierogram.

Nor do we look

in

although the degraded people have forgotten


it

the meaning of the symbol, yet they have religiously preserved


it

because

has been transmitted from their ancestors.


Edinburgh Rev.,
Sir

vol. cxxxi., p. 232. For obvious reasons the phallic theory is not disGardner Wilkinson declares that there is no ground in its favor true the Egyptian word signifying " life " bears a resemblance to the Yoni 1 ingam of the Hindoos, but in Kgypt the Tan was the symbol of purity, the greatest gift of God to man. Ancient Egyptians, vol. ii., S. Baring-Gould pronounces the theory " Monstrous and devoid of evidence." Curious p. 283.
'

cussed.

Myths,

vol. ii., p. 93 and App. A. On the Rosetta stone it is used to translate the title aloavolitoi given to Ptolemy Epiphanius. Ibid., p. 92. For the contrary opinion consult Cox,

Aryan Mythology, App.


Nilus
'

C.

Nor

is

the

Tau

the Nile key


it

that
in his

is

of a different shape,

and

is

of all the gods the least often represented with

hand.

Wilkinson,

vol. iv.

p. 341.

was the angel who instructed Adam in the Cabbala, or Baring-Gould says, it was related by the Arabian .S. Philosopher, Ibn-ephi, that the circle signifies the apple, and thus the Carthusian emblem which bears the motto, " Stat crux duni vok'itur orbis'' is in reality the mystic symbol of Adam mound and cross the crux ansata or life out of death. Legends of the Old Testament, p. 54. ' McCulloch, Researches among the American Aborigines, p. 335.
Raziel, according to the Rabbins,
oral law, or traditions of the Jews.

Before the Christian Era


At
tribes,

9
the natives plunge
all

Susa,

in

Abyssinia,

among

other religious
is

rites,

a cross in the Ri\'er Gitchc.

This

the custom

among

the Galla
cross in Abyssinia.

but for which the\- can assign no other reason than

that

it

had been luuuled down from their forefathers.'

The Kabyle women, although Mohaniinedans,


their eyes.

tattoo a cross between


faith, will

No
of

devout Arab, although professing the same


until the sign
is

marry one

them

obliterated

by a corrosive

liquid."

In W'anyamw'izi, or the
their walls with crosses

Land

of the

Moon, the inhabitants decorate


ornanientati(.)ns painted with

and serpent-like

ashes antl red anil black clav.

The

]\Ioslem

companions
'

of
as-

. , In ^ central ,

Burton declared them to be idolatrous, but the natives


serted that they paid
origin of the custom."

Africa,

them no worship, yet were unable

to tell the

At
laid,

a period far remote, before the foundations of Carthage were

a Berber nation,

now

called the Yuaricks, overspread the desert,

and conquered the oases and mines.


leather tents; they are

This terrible people are yet the

scourge of the peaceful farmer and the passing caravan.

They camp
shields,

in

armed with lance and sword, and with


.
. .

on

which
of

is

painted the image of a cross.

They

established a line

kingdoms from the Niger

to the Nile, in the border land

between the

Sahara and the parallel iO N.

Timbuctoo, Haoussa, Bornow, Baghirmi,


'

all

Waday, of them Islam


Section
2.

Dorfur, and Kordofan were the names of these kingdoms; in


is

now

the religion of the state."

In Asia.

Leaving
siifnifies ^

Africa, and proceeding to Asia,

we
,

find, in India, the cross

bearing the same meaning as in Eg\-pt.


the four elements, which
_ Cross

When
in Asia.

with four equal arms T

it

the Hindoos consider as eternal, and the component parts


of
all

india.

things.

The

gods, the soul of man, and the

life

of

animated

nature they suppose to be generated from them.


that nothing will be annihilated, but only changed
tion,

Hence

their doctrine

souls by transmigrais

matter by transmutation; and therefore Siva, the Destroyer, also

the Preserver, the deity


'

who

presides over the elements,


iii.,

represented
when 1200

Harris, Highlands of Ethiopia^ vol.


Perry, Carthage

p. yg.
is

and

Ttinis, p. 274.

There

a tradition in this tribe that

years have passed since the flight of

Mahomet
,Soc.

the religion of Side Aissa (Jesus Christ) will

be restored.
''

C.

E. Oakley at British

Evang. of the East, April, 1864.


p. 2S5.

R. F. Burton, Lake Region of Central Africa, pp, 222, 297.

Winwood Reade, Martyrdom of Man,

lO

History of the Cross


The
cross
is

with a cross upon his breast.


Siva,

also

found

in

the hands of
in

Brahma, Vishnu, and Tvashtri.


it

When

with a wheel

the centre
is

is

called Kiakra, or Tschakra, "

and

said
'

to be the oldest ensign of majesty in India."

When

held by Vishnu, the world-sustaining


it

principle,

signifies his

power to penetrate

heaven and earth and bring to naught the


powers of
evil.

It

symbolizes his eternal and


of the world.

ever-vigilant

government

Hence,

probably,

its

use as a sceptre

by the ancient

kings of India.

An

Indian

painting

represents
lilies

Brahma

crowned with clouds, with

for eyes, with

four hands; one holding the necklace of creaIndia Acknowledging the Cross,

tion,

another the Veda, a third


life,

the chalice of

the fourth the

fiery cross.

Another painting represents Krishthe world as


its

Buddha, with Cross on breast and hands. From Lundy's MonumaUal


Christianity.

na

in the centre of

sustaining

principle, with six arms, three of


,

the cross, one holds a sceptre ot dominion, an-

....

which hold

other a

flute,

a third a sword.

Another gives Jama, the judge

of the nether

world, with spear, sword, scales, torch, and cross.

Another gives Brawani,


'

the female earth principle, holding a

lily,

aflame, a sword, and a cross."


is

To
Cross

this day, in
in

Northern India, the cross

used to mark the jars of

now

sacred water taken from the Indus and Ganges, as in the

North India.

northeastern parts of Africa the

women
is

impress this sign as

a mark of possession upon


In South India.
,

their vessels of grain, etc.

In Southern India the cross

used as an

emblem

of

disembodied Jaina

,.

saints.

The worshippers
More Followers ofBrahmathan rcvcrcd
ofChrist.

of

Brahma and Buddha outnumber' those


identified

of Christ;

and the symbol,

as that

of

our Master, was


centuries

by the East Indians

their

Lao Tse,

before our Lord appeared upon earth.


'

Edin. Rev.,

Hindus, Tab. i., fig. 2; Tab. i., fig. Tab. ii., fig. 140. Quoted in Gould's Curious Myths of the Middle 78; Tab. ii., fig. 61 Ages, vol. ii., p. no. ^ Rerghaus, in his Physical Atlas, places the Buddhists and Brahmins at 44.6 per cent, of the human race, while Christians are 30.7. Max Miiller, Chips from a German Workshop, vol.
'
;

vol. cxxxi,, p. 232. Miiller, Glatihen, Wissen, und Kuiist, dcr Alten

i.,

p. 214.

Before the Christian Kra


Frequently we mrct
ill

in Iiulia

with a peculiar form of the cross, which

its

uni\'ersality

and interest yields only to the Tau of Eg\-pt.

More

tlian

three thousand years ago was the strange cruciform


Fylfot Cross.

s_\'nibol,
It is

known
It
is

as

the

l'"_vlfot

cross,

reverenced

in

India.'
in

a sacied sN'mbol in the

tombs

of Eg_\-[)t

ami

the catacombs of nations of both


of the

Rome.

graven on the temples of the

i)re-hisli iric

the Eastern and Western Hemispheres.

The heraklry
it

Middle

Ages blazoned

it

on their shields.

To-da_\-

is

used as a mystic symbol

^1^

12

History of the Cross


of our
Sa\'iour.
'"

sand years before the advent

They

are monoliths

resembling the Cornish crosses

(^especially that of St. Bur\-an),

the one

about ten feet nine inches and the smaller, eight feet six inches above
ground, and are similar to others near RajunkoUoor in the Deccan, and " Here, then, amongst are probably the work of the same people.

now fragmentary peoples, from meval race, we find the symbol of the
these

the debris of a widely spread pricross, not only expressing the

same
im' '
'

mystery as

in all other parts of the world,

but

its

erection,

doubtless,
// is

dating from one of the very earliest migrations of our species.


possible to adduce

any clearer or stronger proof of


is

its

antiquity tl/an this.

The
_

glory of the East

her temples, and the plan of

many

of these

exhibits her faith in the saving symbol.


., Cruciform Temples.

Tavernier describes the magat Benares.

nificent pagoda of r o
^]-,g

Bindh IMadhu

edifice

was an immense

cross, with a lofty

centre,

above which a pyramidal structure arose to a

The body of J dome in the great height. At


in

each extremity of the cross was likewise a pyramid, so that the form of
the cross was visible at a vast distance.

Tavernier visited this


it

the

end of the seventeenth century, not many years before

was destroyed

by Aurungzebe, who afterwards

built a

mosque on
their

its

site.'

Temples

of a similar form are found at Mahratta, on the

Jumna, and elsewhere.


pyramidal towers are

Even when the buildings


placed crosswise.

are rectangular,

At the temple
seven
loft}-

of

Chillambrum on the Coromandel

coast, there are

walls,

one within another, round the quadrangle, and as


in

many pyramidal gateways


more than a mile
structures,
Cave Temples.

the niitldle of each side, which form the

limbs of a vast cross, consisting of twenty-eight pyramids, extending


in

one continuous
are even

line."

The cave temples


called
.

more wonderful than the superterraneous

and are perhaps

older.'
b\-

Among
the
i

the most celebrated

is

that

Elephanta
is

natives.

... It situated
p. 253.
iv.
,

Europeans,
ii
i

Gharipuri
1

by the
i
i

on a small island

in

the harbor ot
its

Bombay.
'

The cave

is

nearly in the form of a Greek cross,

dimen-

Ediii. Rev., vol. cxxxi

' ^

Tavernier, Voyages, torn.

p.

149

Maurice, liuiiau Antiq.. vol.

iii.,

p. 47.

Haslam, Cross and Serpent, p. 100. * The Brahmins say they are six thousand years old. Talboy's 0.xford Tables of Chronology Fergusson thinks they may have been constructed since the places them two thousand B.C. Christian era. At all events the religion of which they are symbols antedates Christianity.

Before the Christian Era

13

sions being longitudinally one hundred antl thirty-three feet, transversely

one hundred and twenty-tliree, height about seventeen


extremity
in ont-'
is

feet.

At the
relief,

the Hindoo

triad; the

crux

ii//str/a

is

conspicuously placed low

am, and

the walls are covered with


]5ishop
in his

giL;:intic figures, in

allusive to Siva.

Heber considered
and Ellora. and
art

this

temple specially dedi.Similar

cated to that god

character as Supporter or Destroyer.'


at .Salsette
ci\'ilization

cave temples are found Java received


temples
her

directl}-

from India.

Her

may

date since the Christian era, but her religion,

in

a part of
in

the island,

BuLldhism,

was antecedent.

Of the Chdndi
Cross
Java.

Sewu, or thousand temples. Sir Stamford Karnes writes:


In the

whole course

of m_\- life

have never met with such stupendous

and

finishetl

specimens of Inunan labor and of the science and taste of


in so

ages long since forgot, crowded together


little

small a compass as in this


I

spot,

which, to use a military phrase,

deem

to

have been the


is

head-quarters of

Hinduism

in

Java."
is

Of course the sacred symbol

prominent.

The

Cliandi .Sewu

a vast parallelogram of

two hundred
five or

and
si.x

ninet\--six small

temples with pyramidal roofs composed of


in

steps, of

which the lower three are

the figure of a cross. ^

The

ground plan

of the larger temples, as the

Chandi Lore, Jongrang, and


and

the Chandi Kali Hening, are cruciform.

In the vicinity of the temples


of

are fouiul small siK-er coins bearing the impression of a cross

some

unintelligible characters.

We

follow

Buddhism and
is

its

kindred religion into China.


is

Here the
most

Lao-tseu, as the cross


ancient devices,
era,

called,

acknowledged to be one

of the

known long
the

anterior to the

Sakya-Buddha
Cross in China.

long

before
It is

expiatory Cross was erected upon


it

Calvary.

portrayed upon the walls of their pagodas,


to illuminate the

is

painted
of their

upon the lanterns used


temples.
It

most sacred recesses

symbolizes hea\-en.

Also, as in Africa and in other parts

of Asia, the pottery of

China often bears the Fylfot, probably with the


b\'

same secondary meaning employed


possession.'
'

the people, the sacred right of

' ^

Dudley, Naolog)', p. 333 Asiatic Rescarchfs, vol. Raffles, Hist, of Java, vol. ii., pp. 15-18, 65.
;

iv.,

no. 31.

It

has been said that an iron cross bearing a date corresponding to A.D. 239, was found in

the province of Kiang-see. Christian


relic,

Kesson, Cross and Dragon, p. 10. If so, it may have been a presumiug the tradition to be true that .S. Thomas preached the gospel in China;

14

History of the Cross


From China we
pass to Japan, and find the Fylfot cross the distinctof the ancient sect of

'we

badge

Xaca Japonicus, or

first

reforming

Buddaka.

The

divinity,

now worshipped

as

supreme, wears the Fylfot on his breast.'


This curious symbol (the Fylfot) seems a bond
certain zone.
Cross in .,-.,.. . Thibet

among

nations of a
regalia,

In Thibet

it

has pre-eminence among the royal


sceptres ^
of

on

the

crowns

and

the

Bonpa
^

deities,
all

whose

andTartary.

theology claims to be the most ancient of


graven on the Artec, or musical
bell,

others.

The

gatiiuioiUo)i is

borne by Balgovind,

the herald of peace.

Among
fies

the Tartars, the

name
is

of both priest

and deity. Lama,

signi-

a cross,

and the symbol

used

in their worship.'
in

Even
but there
here.
is

in the

extreme bounds of Asia,

Kamchatka, Humboldt
not be out of place to notice

a genuine relic, which, although of late date,

it

may

In 1625, in digging a foundation in the city of See-gan-foo, capital of the province of Shen-se, a monument was discovered on which was sculptured a cross resembling that upon the
traditionary
cross bottom,

tomb
its

of S.
is

Thom.as

at

Maliapore.

base

surrounded with clouds.

The The

termination of the arms resembling the


inscription gives the date of
is

its

erection,
'

recording the

name

of the bishop, emperor, etc.

" In the margin

written in Syriac:

In the

days of the Father of Fathers,


Syriac
city o(
'
:

In the Greek year

Mar Ananjesus, the Patriarch.' Below are these words, also in ioq2, Mar Jezedbuzd, a Presbyter and Chorepiscopus of the royal
happy memory,
a Presbyter of

Chumdan,

the son of Millesius of

Ealkh

in Tochuristan,

erected this tablet of stone, in which are described the precepts of our Saviour, and the preaching
of our fathers to the

Emperor

of the Chinese.'

These notices
it

fix

the date of the

monument

to

A.u. 781.

The

Patriarch .\nanjesus died about 77S, but

is

highly probable that the

intelli-

gence of his death had not yet reached the far-distant regions of China."
vol.
i.,

Layard, A'incveh,

p. 206,

Am.

ed.

The

inscription further contains

a profession of Christian faith, an


to the Nestorians,

exposition of

Church ceremonies and observances, according

and

a general

Then follows a list description of the introduction and progress of Christianity in the empire. The names are in Syrian, Persian (or Pehlevi,) and Chinese. of missionaries since A.D. 636.
Voltaire and others have sneered at the genuineness of this interesting monument, but Milman A in his note to Gibbon's Decline ami Fall, chap, xlvii., cites the evidence of its authenticity.
full

translation of the inscription

is

given in Kesson's Cross and Dragon, chap.

ii.

see also

Layard as above.
'

Edin. Rev.,

vol. cxxxi., p. 23S.

'

Cardinal Wiseman, Science

and Revealed
S.

Religion, vol.
Saltire.

ii.,

p.

256
the

Voyage de
it

la

Chine,

par

.\vril, p. 194.

The
by the

cross

was

Andrew's or the

Higgins says

represents perin their

fection, indicated

fingers of both hands.

The Mexicans used

same character

secular calendars.
Irish ford,

The

Tartars derive the word

Lama

luam means a head

of a church, an obbol, etc.

from the Scythian lamli, a hand. The Higgins, Celtic Druids, p. 312; Bradfire

Am.

Antiq., 392.

The double pyramid,

or hand, of the Egyptians, signifying

and

water, formed of two triangles

or Solomon's seal, or Wizard's was the famous Hexalpha, According to Eastern allegory, it was placed (as that of S. Michael) upon the rebellious Foot. Hargrave Jennings, The Rosicrucians, p. 166. The original spirits in their abyss or prison. meaning of diUussh was the number ten, the Roman numerical sign for which, X, is made of

two Vs joined.

See Sir Thomas Browne's Garden of Cyrus.

Before the Christian Era


found
1
'

15

tlie

cross
'

ami rude remains


'

of hieroglyphics, similar to those of


'

Eyvpt, but, unfortunately, to the dc>reneratcd natives, the o omystic signs, though revered because handed down
their forefathers, were as

_ Cross in

from
e\en
tjf

Kamchatka.

dead

letters,' all tratlilion

their origin

having been

lost.
is

Returning southward, Persia


noted

still

more

satisfactory.

The
Cross

cross is
in Persia,

among

the sacred symbols, and appears

conspicu[laid,

ously upon an ancient timib to which


as that of the prophet Daniel.

homage
Susa,

is still

It is at

known

in

the days of the


it

captivity as Shusiian.
as of green granite,

.Sir

Robert Ker Porter describes

Tomb

of Daniel.

one side covered with hieroglyphic

figures in low relief.


tlie

The

first

now

contains the sun, moon, and a star;


;

second, animals, hare, dog, etc.


tiger,

the

tliird,

a figure with the


tail

head
of a

and lower extremities of a


goat.

the arms of a man, and the

Three symbolic

figures separate this

monster from another, also

half-man, half-brute, holding a staff; the fourth


lope, a serpent,

now

presents an ante-

and a scorpion; the


" stones wrought
PJr.

fifth,

a trident,

two

birds,

and a

cross with four e([ual arms.^

The gems and


able testimony.

by man's device,"

also bear invalu-

King records an
field of

intaglio, the bust of a


_ Cross

Persian,
in
-

upon
1

a sard.

" In the

the design was engraved a tt c>

. , Antique

ram's head, a double cross, precisely as on the coins of Sala-

Gems.

mis

in

Cyprus, thus intlubitably marking the portrait as that of a Persian

satrap of that island, at


B.C. 323), after

some period before the age

of

Alexander (died
islands

whose time the Persian dominion over the Greek

had entirely ceased.^

The
to us.
turies,

treasures of art and religion in Assyria have lately been

opened

The

cross

is

everywhere dominant.

In the early Christian cenCross in Assyria.

Europe adopted the custom

of prefixing the sign of

the cross to signatures and inscriptions of a specially sacred

nature; but the reverential practice had been anticipated thousands of


'

Haslani, Cross

ami

Serpent,

p.

loi.

'

Porter, Travels in Georgia, Persia,

and Armenia,

vol.

ii.,

p. 413.

This traveller gives the

same

interpretation as later archaeologists.

"The

cross indeed (in wonderful coincidence) is

Prideaux Vol. ii., p. 415. and monument at Susa " even to this day." Connections, pt. i., b. iii. The Persians adored the sun, the moon, and the elements. Hence the cross. Herodotus, quoted by Layard, vol. ii., p. 335. See also Layard, Croix A usee, pp. 25-32.
generally understood to be symbolical of the divinity, or eternal life."
refers to the tradition of Daniel's death
^

C. \V. King, Antique Gems, p. 146.

i6

History of the Cross


tells us that when the cruciform characters are placcd crosswisc before a word, " there is every reason to
,

years before, for Layard


Cross before the

Name of a Divinity.

bclievo that they precede the

name

of a divinity."'

The
nearly

sculptures of Khorsabad and the ivories from

Nimroud
is

e.xhibit

every

variety

of

the

cross.

The

cross pattcc

supposed

primarily to have typified the elysium of the four great gods of the

Assyrians,

Ra

and the
it

first
is

triad,

Ana, Belus, and Hea; when

in-

serted in a roundlet,

emblematic of Sansi, or the sun, dominating the earth as well as the heavens."
It certainly

appears to have been used


of

as the
alty,

symbol

government, or royin
is

and part of the paraphernalia


religious

regal

ceremonies,

for

it

figured on the breast, or placed in the

hands of the monarchs on the Assyrian


marbles now
in the British

Museum.
ornaments

A
let

large cross pattec thus

the breast of Tiglath Pileser in a tab-

from Nimroud.

Another king from


cross,

Nineveh bears a Maltese

and an-

other, from the hall of Nisroch, wears

an emblematical necklace consisting


of the sun surrounded

by a

circle,

the

moon, a Maltese
two horns.

cross within a circle,

a three-horned cap, and a s\'mbol like

The Assyrian
Hera, or the Assyrian Venus.

\'enus,

Hera, also

bears in her hand the cnix aiisata.^

The frequency
upon the

of the cross

graven

From

Layard's A'tncvch.

cylinders,

or seals, should
ruins
in

be noticed.
Cross on Signet.

Many
ried

of

these are found

among

the

Assyria,

verifying the assertion of Herodotus that every


a signet of his own.
vol.
ii.,

man

car-

These cvlinders
iii.,

are from

one

'

Layard, Mincveh,

p. 153.

See infra, part

chap,

ix., sec. 8.

"^

Ediiib. Rev., vol. cxxxi., p. 237.

This writer thinks "that the multiplication of small


in the angles of intersection,

dots,

minor

orbs,

and other adjuncts about the end of the arms, and

are undoubtedly emblematic of celestial as well as terrestrial sovereignty, denoting the


of superior deities,

number

and

their peculiar attributes."

Layard, \iiieveli,

vol.

ii.,

p. 34O.

Before the Christian Era


to

17
in

two

inclics

in

Icnijth,

and about

Iialf

these tlimensions
a bracelet
of the
if

thickwrist.

ness, perforated

lengthwise, and worn hke

on the

When

signets are mentioned in the early

i)art

Old Testament,

they are spoken of as worn on the hand,

rarcl\',

ever,

upon the

finger.

Hence most
his

of

them must have been


upon Joseph

of this type,

although rings of very

ancient date have been found.'

I'haranh took off his signet ring from


((ien.
\li.,
/.

hand

to

bestow
D,i\-itl

it

42).

The Amalekite
the

brought unto

the crown and bracelet,


of

r.,

the signet of Saul (2

Sam.

i.,

TO).

The Lord declared

Coniah,

"

Though he wore
;

and of Zorobabel, signet upon my right hand," etc. (Jer. x.xii., 241 " liven he was as a signet on the right hand " (Ecclesiasticus xlix., 11).

The impression of the seal was taken by rolling it over a lump of temHence the comparison used by the Almighty to Job, the pered clay.
heavens are " turned as clay to the
seal

" (Job

xx.xviii.,

14).

Layard divides the cylinders

intc)

four classes: the early and lower

Assyrian, the purely Babylonian, and the Persian.

The

first

class

ends

with Shalmaneser in the eighth century B.C."

Among

exDivision of Seals,

amples of
^nsata.

this

class,

given

by King, we
is

find

the cri/x

Among
it

the next class


in

an instance of a

woman
Upon

holding a Tau

cross, apparently

the act of worship to the moon, Astarte, one of whose a cylinder in the

symbols,

will

be remembered, was the cross.

Paris Cabinet of Antiquities, published by Munter, are four figures, the


first

winged, the second armed with thunderbolts.


aiisata,

Beside the latter

is

the
is

crux

with a

hawk

perched on the oval handle.

The

cross here

not a subordinate figure, but half the height of the deity.


figures are those of a

The other
is

woman and
is

child.

In the same collection are other

cylinders bearing the sacred symbol.


seated, on either side

Upon

one, a monarch, or deity,

the crux aiisata, behind the throned figure a


still

servant holds up a cross, and

behind him

is

a Maltese cross.

Upon
Mace-

another specimen a god

is

represented extending the cross to a priest,

who
'

offers

him

a gazelle.'

These cylinders were disused

after the

donian conquest.*
The
signet ring of

Cheops

is

preserved in

tlie

Abbott Collection of Egyptian Antiquities,

in the Historical Society,


''

York. A cylinder was discovered at Konyunjik, supposed by Layard possibly to be the signet The King is worshipping before the sacred oak. ring of Sennacherib, eighth century, B. c. Above is the emblematic representation of the divine presence in the form of a winged cross passing through a circle (the emblem of eternity), surmounted by three heads, the symbol of a
,

New

triune god.
132.

Lysons,

Our

British Ancestors, p. 220.


vol.
ii.,

'Gould, Curious Myths,

p. <)5.

See also King's Antique Gems, pp. 129''King, Antique Gems, p. 130.

i8

History of the Cross


Although worn among the ornaments, even by the women
in their

earrings, yet, probably, the cross


Cross as an

was

licid

sacred 'as an amulet, for the


it.

captives were not deprived of


Amulet or Ornament.

Usually
a

it

is

pendant

from a necklace, or attached to the

collar of the dress, as

was customary among the


i

(^i

bhari, an Assyrian tribe,

and also

among

the Rot-n-no, supposed to be Lydians, and likewise

among the

Rebo, a Northern Asiatic tribe resembling the Parthians. Sir Gardner Wilkinson adduces these instances to show that " the cross was already
in use as early as the fifteenth

century before Christ."


to

'

The winged globe

is

common

Egypt, Persia, and other Eastern nations. But the P"eroher, as it


is

called,

is

most

fully

developed
In Nin-

w .^r-.K Winged Globe,


orFeroher.

hi Assyria. ^
^^.^\^

^^g

f|,^J

within

the circle

the figure of a deity


a

armed with
figure

bow

the wings and


cross.

forming a Tau

As
bent

the Psalmist says, "


his
vii.,

He hath

bow and made


12).

it

ready " (Ps.

If

the scene be that of a

battle, the deity wlio hovers


in his cruciform

above

nimbus holds the


is

bow drawn
sented, the

if

a triumph
is

repreif

bow
is

unbent;

he

presides over an act of worship,

the right hand


tion.

raised in benedicis

This symbol

never repre-

sented except over a king, as his


protecting spirit or guardian, or
Assyrian

W inged

else as receiving his royal


Globe.

homage
intercircle as

From

Layard's A'iWw/;.

and worship."

Some have

preted the Feroher as a symbol of a triune god, and translate the


Traces of a Belief
in a Trinity,

symbolizing eternity

the wings, omnipresence, and the


or intelligence.'

hmnau

figure,

wisdom
vol.
i.,

'

Wilkinson, Ancient Egyptians,

p. 376.

"

Layard, Nineveh,

vol.

ii.,

p. 339.

M. Layard

conjectures that the circle denotes eternity,

surrounding the image of Baal with the wings and tail of a dove to show the association of Observations sur la Mylitta or the Assyrian Venus, and the whole is a symbol of the triad. Rawlinson, Five Great Monarchies, vol. ii., 230. Croix Ans^e.
''

Before the Christian lira


From
Feiran
-copper.
in

19

the mines of W'acli Makhara, or " X'alley of the caves," near


Arabia,
tlie

nations bortlerin;^ on the Retl Sea prc.icured their


of their excavations.
Cross
in

The caves show the extent

and the many inscriptions on the rocks give evidence


long ages during which the work was
carrietl on.

Arabia,

of the

Among

these inscrip-

tions arc tile cartouches of Cheops, of the tiflh Egyptian dynasty, the

builder of

tlie

Great Pyramid at (jizeh

.and

Ramcscs

of the eighteenth

dynasty, the great-grandson of the Pharaoh wiio pursued the Israelites


in their

passage through the

Red

Sea.

According to Wilkinson, between


Prominently among these ancient

these

reigns

1500 years elapsed.

writings in the rock appear the

Tau

cross,

and that surmounting an


in patriarchal ages.

orb.'

Mesopotamia was connected with Arabia


of ancient date are few.

Relics
anti-

In post-Christian times, although


find a cross carved

still in

Christian countries,

we

on early Cufic

cross in

gems, the legends being arranged so as to form a Tau, or a


cross.

Mesopotamia,

so

The Cufic we have a clue


every
things.

characters were disused after the thirteenth century,.


to the antiquity of the signets.
for

W'e approach the Holy Land with reverence,

we remember by

whom
liiLrher

tittle

of

the ceremonial law was ordained as typical of


Cross
in

Universal tradition asserts that the blood


Pales-

of the Paschal posts,

lamb was sprinkled upon the


of the Passover in

lintels

and door-

tine,

"Under
Law."

the

on the eve

Egypt,
Jarchi,

in

the form of

a cross.'

According to the Talmud,

and Maimonides, when the


in sacrifice

officiating priest sprinkled the


'

blood of a victim

upon the
consider them

Various theories concerning these inscriptions have been put forth.

Some

the

work

of the Chaldeans, others that of the Israelites during their sojourn in the wilderness,
still

others that of the early Christians, and

others that of a tribe of ancient .Arabians before the

Arabic language was known


113, etc,
'

in

the desert.

Robinson, lUhlical R<:searches,

vol.

i,,

pp. 92, 95,

King, Antique Gems,

p,
It

153,

modifications of the I'ehlevi.


transcribers of the

took the

The Cufic, or name from

square .\rabic character, was one of the


the fact of
its

having been adopted by the

Cufa in Mesopotamia. Ihid., p. 477. ^ It is done so to this day in some countries. In Patras and Corfu, " we observed the doors of the Jews marked on the door-posts and lintels with the blood of the Paschal Lamb and and so " seems a witness against the mark was alway made in the shape of the Cross," Tt is a mute echo of the awful, prophetic, themselves. It is Christ's death lying at their doors. self-invoked curse, His blood be on us and on our children.' " F. W. Faber, Sights and Thoughts in Foreign Churches, etc., p. 399. At Corfu the cross was inscribed with a lock of Tuckerman, The Greeks of To-day, p. 309. In India, the lamb's wool dipped in its blood. yournal of blood is still painted on the door-posts by the natives as a charm against cholera,
at
; . . . '

Koran

Sacred

Lit., 1863, p. 504.

During the plague in London,

it

will

be remembered, the red cross

was so used.

20

History of the Cross


it

consecrated bread and hallowed utensils,

was
oil

in

the form of a cross,


of the

and the same sign was traced


priests

in

consecrated

upon the heads

when

annointed.'

Even whenever occasion required the moving


of the branches of palm, the

of the victims, or the

waving

motion was

made
ings,

to indicate the figure of a cross.

Especially should this be noted in the solemn heave and


called

wave

offer-

by the Jews,

Tcniiplia.

Dr.

Adam

Clarke says, "

As

the

Cross Figured in Heave and Wave


Offerings.

wave

offering

was agitated to and

fro,

and the heave

offer-

ing up and down, some have conceived that this twofold


action represented the figure of the cross,

on which the

God and man was offered in the personal sacrifice of our blessed Redeemer. Had we authority for this conjecture, it would certainly cast much light on the meaning and intention of these offerings, and when the intelligent reader is informed that one of the
great peace offering between

most judicious

critics in

the whole republic of letters


it

is

the author of this


I

conjecture, viz., Houbigant, he will treat


his

with respect.

shall give

own words on
in

this verse.

'

The heave and wave


are here

offerings, as

two

ceremonies

the same oblation,

distinguished.

The wave

offering implies that the victim


right liand

was moved hither and


In this

thither, to the

and to the

left;

the heave offering was lifted up and down,

and

this

was done several times.

way

the Jews explain these

things,

and teach the Christians

tliat

by these acts the cross was adum-

brated,

upon which that Peace


all

offering of the

human

race

was

lifted

up

which was prefigured by


also,
it

the ancient victims.' "

Most

significant,
32),

is

that the heave offering was a peace offering (Lev.

vii.,

and

the wave offering was part of the " consecration of sweet savour " (Lev.
viii.,

28,

29) of

Aaron and

his sons as

High

Priest

and

priests.

Yet
Peace

these ceremonial and prefigurative sacrifices were instituted 1528 years

before the

Lamb of

God, both

priest

and

sacrifice,

was

offered, the

Offering and Redeemer, upon Cah-ary.

Between Phoenicia and Judea there was frequent intercourse, but we have sad evidence that the pagan country had the weightier influence in
religion.
'

Therefore

we cannot suppose
OfiFice of
oil

that

Tyre and Sidon derived

It

is

thus prescribed in the "


thinks the

the Coronation of the Sovereigns of Great Britain."


in a circle
iii.,

Sir

Thomas Browne
'

was poured

on the heads of Jewish kings, but


Mosaica,
vol.
ii.,

decussatively on the heads of priests.

Works,

vol.

p. 3go.

Maimon. De

I'acc/i

Rufa,

p. 495,

quoted

in Faber's //I'rts

p. 188.

^Clarke, Commentary, Ex. xxix., 27.

Before the Christian Kra


their adoration for the cross from Israel.

21

Vet they held


of the waters,
is

it

as a sacred
fit

symbol.

Astarte, the

moon, the goddess


and she

was a
the the

tutelary

divinity for a commercial nation, ^

represented on
Cross in Phoenicia, Asia

the coins of Byblus and other cities as standinij on

Minor, etc.

prow

of a \essel holding a long cross.

Solomon,

in

apostasy of his old age, worshipped at her shrine a thousand years before
Christ.

In sin and ignorance the wisest


in its

man

knelt before an idol.

But

that image bore

hand the symbol

of light

and truth to future ages.

Plnenicia exteniled her colonies throughout the Mediterranean.

So

we At

find in Go/./.o,

an island uiar Malta, a cruciform temple of Astarte.

Citium,

in

Cyprus, colonized by the PhcEuicians more than eight


B.C.,

hundred years
a lamb, on the
cross.

metlal

has

been found bearing on one face


beads resembling a
rosar_\-,

other a circle of
is

and a

The
on

cr//x inisatir

stam|)ed upon the coins of this island, and


in

also

those

of

Cilicia

Asia

Minor,

with

Phoenician
it

legends.
is

Upon one
below

coin the cross

fills

the whole face; upon another

placed

the throne of Baal of Tarsus; others bear the sacred bull

accom-

panied with the cross, or a lion's or ram's head on the obverse and
the cross and circle on the reverse.

superb medal of Cilicia with a

Phcenician inscription, struck under the Persian subjugation, three to


five

hundred years
side.

B.C.,
last

has upon one face Astarte with the c7-ux aiisata

by her

The

example we

shall cite of Phcenician

work

is

an

exquisite intaglio of chalcedony, given in the Mcmoircs dc l' AcaiL'nnc


royalc dcs Inscriptions ct Belles Lcttrcs.''

Between two

stars a figure of a

deity stands, above his head

is

the triangle, or symbol of the trinity,

beneath are

critccs ansatte.''

Before leaving Asia

we pause

to notice the cross


]!.C.

upon the

tomb

of Midas, king of Phrj-gia.

718,

and the Fylfot cross upon the coins of


Chalcedon.
tre

cross in Phryg.a

gold-headed

staff

or seep-

^"dchaicedon.

knob, ornamented with an engraved cross, has


site of

been lately found on the

Homer's Troy, among


silver,

other discoveries of curious jewels in gold,


per,
'

cop-

Sceptre Knob, found


at

Troy.

From

and bronze.'
See
vol. xvi.

Schliemann's Tyoja.

'

Clarke,

Travels, vol,
ii.,

iv,,

p.

77

McCulloch, Hesi-arches,
ii.,

p.

332

Humboldt, Xotiveau

Continent, torn,
^

Gould, Curious Myths, vol. 355 Henry Schliemann, Troja, p. 107.


p,
;

p. 96.

22
Section

History of the Cross


3.

In Europe.

Leaving the
by the
cross.

land of

Shem and

passing to
art

the tents of Japhet,

we

are

welcomed

at the very cradle of


It

European

and
Cross
in

civilization

may have been brought


into Greece

Greece.

with other traditions by those


after the dispersion of Babel,

who wandered

or it may ha\'e been transmitted from Egypt, or Phoenicia, but the same promise of " future life" was symIt

bolized.'

was used

also as a sign of

mercy

in

extending temporal
his

existence, for

when

a criminal

was condemned to death,


a

name was

marked on the

judicial tablets with

Thcta,

the initial of Savaros,


cross, as a sign of life.

death; but when acquitted,

\\ith a T,

the

Tau

The Romans borrowed


been conjectured that

these

symbols

for the

same purpose.^

It

has

this use of the cross

was derived from that marked

with the blood of the Paschal lamb on the door-posts of the children of
Israel
It

on the night of the Passover


is

in

Egypt.'

plain that a sacred symbolic

meaning was connected with the


Christ, Plato, in his Epistle

cross in Greece.

Four hundred years before

to Dionysius of Syracuse, intimated his belief in a trinity, and elsewhere " expressed an opinion that the form [symbol ?] of the second person

was stamped upon the universe

in

the form of a cross."


is

An

inscription in Thessaly,

EPMJD, X&ONIOT,

accompanied by a

Calvary cross.' Numerous examples of the Fylfot cross are foimd on Greek
pottery, circa B.C. 600, and on the coins of Corinth and also
Cross
in

Greece.

those of Gnossos, or Cnassos, a city of Crete, B.C. 500-450.

Northern Italy was inhabited by a people so many ages ago that


history has forgotten them.
in villages built
Cross
in Italy.

Research has discovered that they dwelt

on platforms over

lakes,

that they were

ignorant of the arts of civilization, but they knew enough to believe in the cross as a religious symbol, " and that they trusted in
it
'

the cross to guard, and

may be

to revive, the loved ones

whom

they

committed to the dust."


'

Caylus, Rcciicil d'AiUiq.


K.ioul Rochette,
It

Fosbroke, Encyc. Anliq., p. 159.


7
;

'^

Sur

la

Croix Ansce, note


;

Persius Sat.,

iv. 13.

'

"

is,

in fact, a

symbol of acquittal

fore were to be spared.

From

this

notion of marking the

names

of the
;

God having acquitted or justified them, they thereoriginal emblem of divine protection, the Greeks derived the acquitted with a T without knowing its real signification."
p. 241. to underst.and

Deane,
S.

Sirpinit IVorskip, p. 143

Godwin, Roman Antiq.,

Augustine acknowledged his indebtedness to Plato in en.ibling him doctrine of the Trinity. Lysons, Ottr British Ancestors, p. 215. ' Gould, Curious Myths, vol. ii., p. gS.

the

**

Ibid., p. 99.

Before the Christian Era


There are vast remains
of these people, consisting of cinders,

23
bones

animals, grain, querns, moulds for metals, portions of their houses,


pottery, mainly in fragments; a few weapons,

some

articles of the toilet,

even hair-pins ami combs, and such other matters as would accumulate

around

h.ibitations.

Owing

to the geological changes, the shores

and

beds of lakes

have become dry ground, and the deposits, being

rich in

phosphates, have been dug into by the farmers for fertilizing purposes;

hence these discoveries.

is

The remains belong to three ilistiiict rude, not made upon the wheel, nor
also, iron
is

ages.

In the

first,

the pottery

fire-baked;

both of these eviI'e-

dences of the advances of civilization are found

in the

jj^ff^^jnt

Ages

of

mains of the second age;


the metal
bronze.
in

met with, although

the xerramares.
is

these tcrrainarcs, as these depositories are termed,


the third period,
in

mainly

In

rarely distinguished,

the beginnings of

ornamentation are discovered

the rude representations of animals and

human
some

beings on the pottery.

Among

the remains of this last age,

shapeless pieces of bronze occur, which


first

some antiquarians have

supposed to be the

trace of

money.

Etruria flourished twelve

centuries before the Christian era,' yet these nations must have lived and

disappeared

many

ages before Etruscan art and civilization -were

Ijorn.

At
of

Castione,

near the station

Borgo San Do-

nino,

bet w

e e n

Parma and
cenza,
a

Piais

there

mound
is

upon
a con-

which
vent.

Originally

that

mound was
filled
I'.irthen vessels

the bed of a lake

which was
with

relics of this

found

at

Castione.

ancient

people

From De
;

Mortillet's I.e Si^ne dc la Croix.

among them
'

are earthen vessels, and

upon the bottoms


in

of

some were

rudelv engraved crosses, as represented


M. Des Vergers

the accompanying engravings.

calculated that Etruscan civilization was developed B.C. 1330.

24

History of the Cross


At
Villanova, near Bologna, one of their burial-places has been dis-

covered.
Cemeteries at
Villanova.

More than one hundred and

thirty
-

tombs have been examined.


''

Thev
-

are

carefully ^

and

symmetrically

constructed

of

bouldcrs, ovcr wliich the earth has accumulated.

Within
remains.

each sepulchre was a cinerary urn containing calcined

human

Cylinder found at Villanova.

From De

Mortillet's

Le Signe de

la Croix.

Heads

of Cylinders found at \illanova.

From De

Mortillet's

Le Signe Je

Croix.

and .sometimes half-melted ornaments.


inverted cones joined together, the

The urns were shaped like two mouth being closed with a little

Before the Christian Era


saucer.

25

Near the remains

of the

dead were found sohd double cones


In the

with rounded ends on which crosses were elaborately engraved.

vases of double cones around their partition was a line of circles contain-

ing crosses.

There

is

another cemetery at Golasecca

near the extremity of

Lago Maggiore.

number
openetl
;

of

tombs have been

At Golasecca.

they belong to the


as those of Villanova, that o
i)uttom
of Vase.

same age

the lacustrine habitations.

" That which characterizes the sepul


chres of Golasecca, and gives

Accessory Vase found at


Golasecca.

them
this,

their

highest interest," says M. de Alortillet,

From De

Mortillefs Z.la

who

investigated them. "


all

is

Si^iK de
first,

Croix.

the entire absence of

organic representation;
in

we found only

three,

and they were exceptional,


secondl_v,

tombs not belonging

to the plateau;

the almost invariable presence of the cross under the vases

Bottoms of Ossuaries.

Ossuary found

at Golasecca.

From De
in the

Mortillet's

Le

Sigtu- de la Croix.

one reverses the ossuaries, the saucer lids, or the accessory vases, one saw almost always, if in good preservation, a The examination of the tombs of Golacross traced thereon.
tombs.
. . .

When

26

History of the Cross

secca proves in a most convincing, positive, and precise manner, that which

the tcrrainares of Emilia had only indicated, but which had been confirmed

by the cemetery of Villanova, that above a thousand years before Christ, the cross was already a religious emblem of frequent employment."
'

In 1817. at Montecucco near

Rome,

vases bearing the Fylfot cross

were dug up from underneath the volcanic tufa, of such an age that they are pronounced to have been manufactured by a people who
At Montecucco.

iiaiit mhabited the country before Ascanms founded Alba Longa,


,,
*

.,,.,,
1

.,-

that

is,

before

176 B.C.^
F_\-lfot

Among
Fylfot used by Latins, and

the ancient Latins the


tina, or

cross

was the emblem

of Liber-

of mortal fate

Persephone, the Queen of the Shades, the arbiter ^ and this, or the practice of concealing the
",

Christian Fossors.

symbols of their
^^^^^^_

belief

under the guise of pagan emblems,

have led the early Christian Fossors. or tomb-diggers


it

in the

catacombs, to adopt

as

it

appears on their garments.

So much
Italy, that

space has been given to the unwritten page of the history of

only a brief reference can be made to other examples.

In the

mausoleum

of Lars Porsenna, circa 500 B.C., in Etruria, thrice

was the cross repeated.


Cross
In
in Etruria.
.

The

coins of Vibius Pansa, consul of


-'

Rome,
a long

46 ~ B.C., bear on the reverse Tupiter crowned with oak, or ^


'

Rome.

oHve, holding in his right hand a patera, in his

left

sceptre terminating in a cross.

The

staff of

the

Roman

augurs was some-

times surmounted with this symbol, and the vestal

\-irgins

suspended the

Fylfot cross from their necks, doubtless with more reverential feeling

than

many women at the present day bear the jewelled emblem of salvation among the trinkets which adorn their bosoms. Gems also give their testimony. Among other examples may be
mentioned a chalcedony exhibiting Jupiter holding
of Victory, in the other a
in

one hand an image


eagle are

double

cross.
is

The thunderbolt and

on either

side.

Upon

the reverse

an inscription arranged to represent

a serpent coiled."
'

De

Mortillet, I.e signc de la Croix


ii.,

avant

le

Christianisnie,

Paris, lS66, chap,

iii.,

pp. 98-

127

Gould, Myths, vol.


'

pp. 103-105.
Editi. Rev.,

^According

Ilobhouse, Ilbisirations of the IVth Canto of ChilJe HarolJ, stanza cLxxiv. to Pliny, who borrowed his account from M. Terentius Varro.

vol. cxxxi., p. 250.


* On account of the symbols, Walsh considers this a Gnostic gem, of the sect Simon Magus, who was sometimes represented as Jupiter. Walsh, Cents, p. 62.

that followed
It

may be

so,

but

we have

very similar coins that were ante-Christian.

Before the Christian Era

27

Many
medal

of the coins of Syracuse bear the impress of the Fylfot.


Cross
in Sicily.

of

Camarina
bears
altar;

swan and an
latter

beneath the

are the cross and ring.

The most
circuLir,

ancient

coins of the (iauls were

with

.1

cross in

the middle.

Fhat these
representaI'roin Walsli's

were

not

Aiuicnt Coins, Medals, mid

Gviiis.

tions of wheels, as has been supposed,

is

evident from there beiny but


Cross
in

four spokes, placed at right angles; and this symbol conFrance.

tinued

when

coins of the Greek tyi)e took their place.

The

coins of the Volca; Tectosages,


as

who

inhabited the region

now known
filled

Languedoc, were stamped with

crosses, the angles of

which were

with pellets.

The

Leuci,

who

li\ed in the country of

modern

Told, used similar devices.


coin figured in the

Rcvuc dcs
bears a

JSiiimisinatiqucs,
Ancient Gaulish Coins.

1835,

circle

containing a cross, whose

From Gould's Curious Myths.

angles are occupied by che\'rons.

Some

of the crosses are surrounded

by

a ring of bezants, or pearls.

Near

Paris, at Choisy-le-Roy,

was found a Gaulish

coin, the obverse bearing a

head, the reverse a serpent coiled around the circumference, enclosing two
birds; between
pellets

them

is

a cross with pellets at the

end of each limb, and

occupying the angles.

Similar coins have been discovered in


coins were discovered, in

Loiret and elsewhere.

About two hundred


Quimper,
in

1835, at Cremiat-sur-Yen, near


in a

an earthen urn with ashes,


in

tomb, showing that the cross was used

Armorica,

in

the age of

cremation.
In 1850, S. Baring Gould
of an extensive palace,

exhumed

at

Pont d'Oli, near Pau, the ruins

paved with mosaic.

The

principal ornamentaof
Ruins at pont
'^'''-

tions were crosses of different varieties.

The pavement

the principal

room was bordered by an

exquisite running

pattern of vines with grapes springing from drinking vessels in the centre

28
of the sides.

History of the Cross


Within were
cross,
circles

composed

of conventional roses, in the

middle a vast

measuring nineteen
feet.

feet

eight inches by thirteen


of white
in

The ground work


and other
fish,

was

filled

with

shell

and

the centre was a

bust of Neptune with his trident.


ers exclaimed, "
It

The
c' est

labor-

est Ic

bon Dicii,

y^sus."

may have been

of post-Christian times, but,

from the examples already given, Mr. Gould


believes the cross to have

been a sign well

known

to the ancient Gauls,

and that

this

was

their work.'

Among the more northern nations of Europe


Cross in Northern Europe.
"^^'^o

derived their mythology from

Scandiuavia, the Fylfot cross ap-

pears as a symbol of worship under the


Cross, with bust of Neptune,

name

of Tlior's

hammer.

found near Paris.

From

In 1835, in a field in Bornholm, an island in

Gould's Curious Myths.

the Baltic, near Sweden, ornaments and coins


of gold were discovered bearing this figure.

Some

of the coins

were
as a

impressed with a horned beast bearing a


we
en.

human head

rider,

upon whose forehead was Thor's hammer.

Four

of

the specimens have also the

name

of the
in

god

in

Runic

characters.''

Among

the

flint

weapons found
was with

Denmark

are stone cruciform

ham-

mers, which are supposed to have been used

in sacrificing victims to

Thor.
In

It

his

hammer. Mjolner, that Thor crushed

Denmark.

the head of the Alitgard serpent, destroyed the giants, restored to


life

the dead goats which drew his car, and consecrated the

pyre of Baldur.

This

hammer was

a cross.

In the old Scandina\-ian records

we

read that

when

(^din

was near

his

death, he caused himself to be marked with the point of a spear, saying


that he was going to
riors

Godheim,

to prepare a

welcome

for all brave war-

who should be

dedicated to him, and the Swedes believed that he


live eternally.

had gone to the ancient Asgard to


'

He was marked
Review
figure
is

with

Gould, Myths,

vol.

ii.,

pp. 76-86.
tresul, or

.^n able writer in the Edinburgli


trident,

thinlis that

Gould has been misled by the Neptune. Vol. cxxxi., p. 335.


'

and

th.-it

the

that of Proteus, not

Ti-ansaelions

of the
vol.

Society
ii.,

of Northern Antiquarians for iSjb.

'

Gould, Myths,

p. 86.

Before the Christian Era

29

the sign of the head of a spear, that is, with the sign of the cross; for, " Tlie sign of Thor's liammer, or the head of a battle-axe, or halberd,"
says Laiiig, " was used as the sign of the cross after the introduction of
Christianity as a kind of consecration

by a

hol_\-

syniboL"

'

Of King Hacon, we are


and to

told that he
in

was a Christian, and wished


one God, and
in Christ,

his

people to be " baptized, and believe


of Mar}-,
refrain

the son
re-

from

all

sacrifices to

heathen gods.
sacrifice

They
full

fused,

and

insisted

upon the King's offering


sat

at

the

harvest

festival.

The King

on

his throne.

was

filled.

Earl Sigurd spoke

Now when the first some words over it, blessed it


it.
?

goblet

in

Odin's
it

name, and drank to the King out of the horn; and the King took

and

made

the sign of the Cross over

Then
all

said

Kaare

of Gryting,
'

'

What

does the King mean by doing so


replied,
'

Will he not sacrifice


of

Earl Sigurd

The King

is

tloing

what

you do who
goblet in the

trust to

your power
of

and strength.

He

is

blessing the

full
it.*

name

Thor, by
for

making the

sign of his

hammer
in

over

On

this there

was quietness

the evening, for his followers called themselves the children of Thor, and

expected to be saved
cross.

the

last

day by Thor's hammer,"

'

i.

c, the

Longfellow refers to the Scandinavian symbol and the cross when


describing

King Olaf keeping Yule-tide

at

Drontheim:

" O'er his drinking horn the sign

He made
.\s

of the Cross divine,


;

he drank, and muttered his prayers


the sign of the

But the Berserks evermore

Made

hammer

of

Thor

Over
In reality both were the same
"

theirs."

And
The

in

foaming cups of

ale

Berserks drank washrel

To
Even
magical
.

the Lord."
cross,

to this day, Thor's

hammer, or the Fylfot

is

used

in

the

rites still practised in

Iceland by the witches,

who
Cross
in Iceland.

clami thereby to rule the elements.


I
'

came not

to bring peace, but a sword."


i.,

was the sad prophecy

of

Laing, Chronicles oj the Kings of Nor%vay\ vol.


Ibid., p. 330.

p. 224.

'

30

History of the Cross


fulfil

the Prince of Peace, and even his symbol was misused to

his

word.

One custom, probably


a late date
The Fiery
Cross.

derived from the


:

Scandinavians, descended to
the north-western nations
of the Fiery cross,'

the

summons among

of
i.e.,

Europe to council or war by means

cross

the ends of which

had been scorched.

Scott's graphic

description, of the preparation and hurrying on of


"

the

fell

cross of blood

and brand,"

"

is

not exaggerated.

In the island of Lewes, one of the Hebrides,

the Danes became oppressive, a fiery cross was circulated

when among the


singly.'

Gaels with the brief announcement: " Every one shall slay his guest."

The strangers, being unwarned and Even as late as June 9, 1685, the fiery
and sixty might
circulated in
rise

dispersed, were
cross

murdered

was

sent,

by order
all

of govern-

ment, through the west of Fife and Kinross, that

between sixteen
have been

and oppose Argyle.'


high reverence

It

is

said also to

some

parts of Scotland in 1745. but without effect.


in
in

The
Druids.

cross

was hekl

the religious rites of the

In the consecration of their holy oaks, the trees were

made

Cross among the Druids.

crucifomi either by being lopped in the desired shape, or


j^y ^Y\Q insertion of

other branches.

At the

intersection of

the arms the word Thau, or God. was inscribed, on the right Hesus, on the
left

Helenus, and in the middle of the trunk Tharnis, the names of


triad.''

the Druidical
'

In

Charnwood
i.

Forest, Leicestershire, England,

is

Herbert, Iceland Poetry, pt,

' * ^
''

Lady of the Lake, canto iii., stanzas viii-xxi. Worsaae, Danes and A'orwegians in England,

p. 293.

" Diary of Lord Fountainhall, 1680 to 1701," Forsyth, Antiquarian Portfolio, vol. i., Borlase, Antiquities of Cormvall, p. 108 Maurice, Indian Antiquities, vol. vi.,
;

p. 351. p.

49.

The
sixth

cutting of the mistletoe

is

too significant to be passed without notice.

The

fete

day of the moon.

(Christ suffered on the sixth day, at the sixth hour,

and that

was on the number has

always been considered symbolical of suffering, hence even the chalice to hold the mystical

blood represents the number


of about thirty years growth.

in the

form of

its foot.)

(Christ

was about

thirty

The mistletoe was sought for upon an oak when He bore His cross.) When the
first,

oak was found, a triangular altar was raised.


to

In the procession the Eubagi marched

con-

ducting two white bulls which had never borne the yoke, then followed the bards chanting hymns

Next came the novices, students, and disciples, accompanied by a herald clothed in These were followed by the most ancient pontiffs, one carrying the bread which was to be offered the second two bearing two vessels filled with wine and water ; the third a wand terminating in a hand of ivory representing Justice and Power. Next came the clergy, preceded by the supreme pontiff, in a white robe, and a girdle of gold, and the procession was closed by noldes and people. Having arrived at the oak, prayers were offered, and a burnt offering of some of the bread, wine, and water. The remainder of these elements was distributed among
God.
white.
;

Before the Christian lira


an oak,

3^

known
tile

as the Coi)t, or
fifty

copped oak,

tlie

outer shell of which was


jri^
.

in existence

about

years ago, and was evidently


it is

one of

Uruidic Thaus;
\-cars old.'

probably more than

two thousand

Some
the priests.

of

the remains of what are presumed to


CL-lelmint then

A_
J\^.

The

ascended

J^uf,!

the tree and cut

off,

wilh a jjoUlen sickle,

o
A^

the mistletoe, one of the principal priests


receiving
it

q
iV

with great reverence.

The

supreme
lated

pontiff,

aided by others, immo-

the two

bulls,

and the ceremony

concluded by the prayer that God's benediction

'

would

rest

upon

jj


'

>

sD

rrl

the gift to be distributed

among

the people, then prostrate

upon the

The inferior order of Druids then distributed portions of the sacred


ground.
mistletoe,

temples, and

some of which were some were worn


Qiit-rics,

sent to the
as amulets

against sickness, evil spirits, thuniler, etc.

Manet, Notes and


p. 485-

3d

ser.,

iv.,

The
name,
spirit

Druidical
is

name

of the misth'toe,
Its

" All Heal,"

significant.

British

C/,

signifying

spirit,

life,

the

a
<

of healing

and divination.

There

e
%
p
"

seems to be an underlying tradition of the prophetic value of a branch which was to have healing powers, as Zechariah foretells: " Behold I will bring forth my servant the
/';'ac//."

J
ft

Zech.

iii.,

8.

It

was

'
-

a branch w'hich sweetened the waters of

Mara. Even the golden branch of Virgil. and other mythological traditions, may point to the " religious branch " foretold by the prophets, as springing from the " stem of Jesse." Again, the mistletoe

was

of a different nature from the oak


it

on

i)_

tH

ifll

',Mi

r>

A^ fV.^

-5\.

i^

which

grew.

A mystical

representation

of the expected Saviour, the

taking another

nature than

" All Heal" that which


?.^.,

belonged to him by prior generation,


the grafting of the
nature.

human upon

the divine

The oak itself was sacred to God, the name in Hebrew, Ale/i, having the same root as divinity itself. Lysons, Our British AnceS'
tors,

2a

pp. 199, 201

32

History of the Cross

have been their temples are cruciform.


ernis, in the island of
Cruciform Temples.

An

example

is

found near Class-

Lewes.

Thirty-nine massive stones form the longer

Hmb

of the cross, thirteen the circle, in all fifty-two; twelve


tile

composc

head and arms.

The

stones are from four to


is

seven feet in height, except the centre one, which


eter of the circle
five
is

thirteen.

The diamis

sixty-three feet
feet,

the length of the cross at present

hundred and eighty-five


is

formerly

it

was seven hundred; the

length of the arms

two hundred and four


that the long

feet.'

The Druids considered way of life


;

arm

of the cross symbolized the

the short

arms the three conditions of the

Symbolism.
spirit

world, equi\alcnt to Heaven, Purgatory, and Hell.^


Irish

According to enthusiastic
subterranean
Cross
in Ireland.

antiquarians, their cave,

or rather
ec-

mound, temples
clesiastical

are
in

more
Great

ancient
Britain.

than

any other
of

remains
that
of

One

the best
in

known
county
New
of

is

New

Grange, near

Drogheda,

the

Meath.

It is

formed
is

of vast stones covered with earth.

The

ground plan
Grange.

cruciform, about eighty feet in lengtli by

twenty-one

in

the transverse.

The

height of the gallery, at


it

the entrance about two feet, gradually increases until

becomes

nine.

The temple

appears to have been dedicated to Tlior, Odin, and Friga.


in

Valiancy considered the inscriptions,


the most ancient in Ireland.

Ogham and

symbolic characters,

He

translated that on the right of the long

arm

of the cross, "

The Supreme Being," or" Active

Principle."

On

the same side, thrice repeated, are characters of a somewhat like import, signifying "The Great Eternal Spirit." On the " covering stone " of
the east transept
front of the
is,

"To

the great Mother Ops," or " Nature."


is

In

" Chance, Fate, or Providence." On the north stone of the west transept is, " The sepulchre of the Hero," on a stone on the left of the gallery are " men, oxen, and swine, probably

head of the cross

signifying the several species of victims sacrificed at


of universal Nature, Providence,

tliis

temple

in

honor

and the names

of the hero interred

within."

Vallency supposes that this tumulus was erected towards the


If

close of the second century.'

not pre-Christian,

it is

at least the

work

of

men who knew nothing


'

of Christianity.^
p. 136.
'

Toland,

f/ist.

of the Druids,
p. 15.

Gould, Myl/is,

vol.

ii.,

p. So.

Wright, Louthiana,

*
^

Valiancy, "Col. Rel. llib.,"

vol.

ii.,

p. 211,

quoted

in Higgins, Celtic

Druids,

p.

.\liii.

For

full

description see Fergusson's

Rude Stone Motiuments.

34

History of the Cross


In the neighborhood of

New

Grange are two other mounds, known as

the Hills of
^,
,. Nowth and
.

Nowth and Dowth.


resembled

The

latter

was explored
its

in

1847.
is

It

New

Gransjc and within o


with

chamber

a quad1

Dowth.

rangular stone covered


is

carvings,

among which

the

cross

conspicuous.'
cross,

The Tau

according to McCuUoch, was


of

known among

the an-

cient Irish as the

symbol

Wisdom.

Section
.^

4.

In America.

We might slightly alter Bishop Berkeley's


it

famous prophecy, adapting


"

as a fact, that

America.

Westward the Cross'


'

of empire takes

its

way

"

for, in

passing from the Old to the

New

W^orld,

we

find that the cross


It

rules almost

from Behring's Straits to Cape Horn.

has been found

from Oregon to Patagonia.

When
"
,

the Spaniards

They could
.

first landed in Mexico and Central America not suppress their wonder," says Prescott, " as they be'

In ,, Mexico

and

held the cross, the sacred


j,g

emblem
ill

of their

own
of

faith, raised
*

Central America.

^^ objCCt of WOrsllip
relics of

thc

tCUlpleS

AuallUaC. "

"

Even among the


those

nations whose existence had been forgotten by


Pal-

who then
is

inhabited their lands, the cross had been adored.


in

enque

supposed to have been founded by Votan

the ninth century


is

before the Christian era.


palace, or temple,

One

of the principal buildings in that city


feet long b)'

two hundred and eighty-eight


in

one hun-

dred and eighty feet


of
its

width, and forty feet high.


is

At

the back of one

altars,

sculptured on a slab of gypsum,

a cross ten feet high,


is

richly decorated with symbolic figures.

On
is

the lower limb

fish, re;

minding us
the cross

of that Christian

symbol

in

the Catacombs of

Rome

above

sits

a bird, which Stephens thinks

thc Znitzitiziliau, or
in

hum-

ming-bird of the Mexicans, which corresponds,


deluge, to the dove of

their traditions of the


it

Noah; but Gould considers


figure,

the eagle, Nisroch,

or rain cloud, already noticed on the cylinders of Babylon.


side of the cross
<:rDss.
'

On

each

is

human

one of which holds up a

cliild

to the

The garments

of the three are profusely decorated with crosses.'


Aiiliguties, chaps,
iii.,

Wakeman, Handbook of Irish


Prescott, Conquest

iv.

'

of Mixico,

vol

iii.,

pp. 383, 384.

^Stephens, Central America, vol.

ii.,

p. 351.

rt

36

History of the Cross


cross
is

The same
which
is

represented on old pre-Mexican MSS., as in the


in possession of

Dresden Codex, and that


a colossal cross,
figures stand

Herr Fejervary,

at the

end of

upon which

is

represented a bleeding deity, and


is

around

Tau

cross

upon which

perched the sacred

bird/'

'

The Spaniards
upon the breasts

also

found Tau crosses of metal," but whether used as

ornaments, or amulets, they appear to be ignorant.


of bronze statuettes of

The Tau

is

figured

unknown

antiquity which have

recently been disinterred in the cemetery of Juygalpa, in Nicaragua/

Throughout the whole


north
daro.

of

Mexico we
It

find

this veneration of the cross.

occurs in the

among

the Mixtecas and in Ouerecross

An

Inciian

was found

in

the

cave of Mixteca Baja, and similar ones were


discovered

among

the ruins on the island of

Zaputero

in

Lake Nicaragua.
in

White marble

crosses were found on the island of S. Ulloa,

and wooden ones


the Zapotecas.*

Aquatolco and among

In Oajaca, there was a cross which the


natives had reverenced as a divine

symbol

from time immemorial.


Oajaca.

By

or-

der of the Bishop of Cervantes,


it

was

placed
in

in

sumptuous
discovery,
its

chapel
Cross found at Palenque.

the cathedral, and inforits

mation concerning

From

Wilson's Mexico.

together with a cup cut from

wood, was sent


singing the

to Paul

V. at Rome,

who
its

received

it

upon

his knees,

hymn

Vcxilla Regis.''
is

In Cholula there

a temple

which

discoverers

presumed

to be

dedicated to the worship of the cross,


'

and in the " Casas de Piedras in

Gould. Myths,

vol.

ii.,

p. io6.

' '

Kinssborough, Mexico,
Gould, Myths, vol.

vol. vi., p. 420.


i.,

Boyle, Riile Across a Continent, vol.


ii.,

p. 161.

*
'

p.

107.

Stephens thinks

Calderan, Life in Mexico, Letter 37. The cross of Cozumel might also be instanced. it of Spanish origin, Yucatan, vol. ii., chap. 20 but Prescott considers it native,
;

Mexico,
'

vol.

iii.,

p. 334.
vol. vi., p. 418.

Kingsborough, Mexico,

Before the Christian


Chiapa some of
tlic

lira

2i7

wimlows

arc in the form of the


is

Greek

cross,

and on

the wall of one of the apartments


liibitini^'
I

a tablet of sculptured stone, ex'" Cholula.

the figure of a large and richly ornamented cross


I
1 1 1

placed upon an altar or pedestal.

Kmgsborough
1 1 1

gives

a curious ex.unple of a cross with a skull at the foot similar to the


a;val crucifixes in the

medi-

Eastern

lleniisi)here.''

Nor
Flastern

are cave temples wanting to comi)lete the resemblance to the

Hemisphere.

One

at Mitla, " the city of the

moon," has been


cruciform
"^^

hewn out

of the solid rock,

its

limbs being one hundred and


in

twenty-three feet in lenglli, and about twenty-fi\'e

width.

emp

es.

Upon the walls the figure of a ]5erfect Maltese (Greek?) cross is carved.' Upon certain high festivals, the Mexicans made crosses out of Indian
corn and the blood of their
sacrificial victims.

These were

first

wor-

shipped, and afterwards broken and distributed


worshi[)pers,

among

the
Cruciform Cake.

who

ate

them

as a s_\-mbol of union

and brother-

hood.

Such

close resemblance to the

Sacrament of the holy Eucharist


S.

probably led the Spaniards to think that

Thomas and

his disciples

had

found the way from India to these countries.'

But not only the type of


arrival of the

one sacrament was practised by the natives jjrevious to the


Spaniards, but also even a
rite of

baptism.'

The

sepulchres of the ancient inhabitants of Mexico and Central

America were generally cruciform."


'

Du

Paix gives a number of

in-

Brndford, American Antiqii'ilics, p. 8l.

'

Kingsborough, Mexico,
Ibid., vol. vi., p. 42g.

vol.

ii.,

pi. 37.

^ *

Prescott, Mexico, vol.

i.,

p.

60

vol.

ii.,

p. 5

vol.

iii.,

pp. 383-336.

The

last syllable of

Quetzacoatl signifies a twin.

By some confus-ion of ideas, probalily, the Spanish writers supposed this intimated Didymus, /. e., Thomas. ' " Their surprise was heightened, when they witnessed a religious rite which reminded them of the Christian Communion. On these occasions, an image of the tutelary deity of the Aztecs was made of the flour of maize mixed with blood, and, after consecration by the priests, was distributed among the people, who, as they ate it. showed signs of humiliation and sorrow,
declaring
it

was the

flesh of the deity.

How
the

could the

Roman

Catholic

fail to

recognize the

awful ceremony of the Eucharist?

With

same

feelings they witnessed another ceremony,

head and lips of the infant were touched with water and a name given to it, while the goddess Civacoatl, who presided over child-birth, was implored that the sin which was given to us before the beginning of the world, might not visit the child, but that, cleansed by these waters, it might live and be born anew." "The Spaniards were not aware," continues Prescott, " that the cross was the symbol of worthat of the Aztec baptism, in which, after a solemn invocation, the

ship of the highest antiquity in

Egypt and
iii.,

Syria,

and

that rites resembling those of

Communion
had never

an

Baptism were practised by pagan nations on


Prescott, Mexico, vol.

whom

the light of Christianity

shone."
'

pp. 383-387.

Squier, Serpent

Symbol in America, pp. 98-100.

38
stances.

History of the Cross


From Mitlan, or commencement
" the palace of the dead," from the structure
of the Mijian
Cruciform
Sepulchres.

upon the

Mountains, from the town of


Chila on the

summit

of the

mountain called Tortuga,


in-

and elsewhere, do not these witnesses


timate a belief
in

the Resurrection

by

means
symbol

of the truth hidden in the sacred


?

And

is

not this confirmed by


?

the ancient Mexican names for the cross

The

" Tree of Nutriment," the " Tree of


!

our Flesh," the " Tree of Life "

'

And
tombs

that this s)-mbol was placed on their


Plan of Sepulchral Chamber
at

Mitlan.

and temples show's that the significance


^yjjg j-,Qt

From Squiei's ^

St'rpent Symio/. J r

.i-.j. .1- i-r iiinited to this life

only

Section of Sepulchral

Chamber

at Mitlan.

From

Squier's Sei-pent Symbol.

Plan and Section of Sepulchral Chamber at Chila, Mexico.

From

Squier's Serpent Symbol.

tradition appears to have been

common throughout Mexico and


If'orli/,

Central America, that a nation, bearded and white, bearing the cross,
'

Brinton,

^Myti'is

0/

the

A'ew

pp. g5, q6.

Before the Clirislian lira


should come from a distant
laiul
;

39
places the Spaniards

hence

in

many

were welcomed as expected guests, the priests informing them that ancient prophecies

had foretold the coming of a nation bearing


ami that their own
relisjion

the sacred before


it.'

sitrn, ^

would disapiJear

Traditions of strangers bnnging the Cross.

In Yucatan, the early R(.)man C.itlr)lic mission-

aries have preserved some of the

hymns

of

the natives in which these


all

ancient traditions have been embodied.

Ailmitting

due allowance

for

the religious bias of the niissionaries in their translation of the nati\'e


chants, yet the substratum of truth
is

ackuowletlged by

earl\- historians.

We

quote a translation, said to be

literal, of

one

hymn

as

an example:

" At the close of the thirteenth

Age

of the world,

While the

cities of Itza

The s/j(// of the The light of the dawn And the Cross will be

and Tancah still flourish, Lord of the Sky will appear,


will

illumine the land.

seen by the nations of men.


be, Itzalanos,

A
A

father to )ou will

He

brother to you, ye nations of Tancah,

Receive well the bearded guests who are coming. Bringing the sign of the Lord from the daybreak.

Of
This
arri\-al
is

the I.ord of the Sky, so

dement

yet powerful."

said to

have been composed about 1450, therefore before the

of the Europeans,

and was used throughout Yucatan.


official

Although the ancient

annals of Mexico were destroyed by the

Spanish invaders, yet tradition and early histories have preserved the
outlines.

Successivelv the countr\- has been occupied bv

Antiquity of

the Chichimecs, the Colhuas, the Toltecs or Nahuas, and the Aztecs,

Mexican Customs.

who

had been the inhabitants for

more than

two centuries before they were conquered by Cortez.

Advanced

as they

were in civilization, still, in some respects, they were behind their preIn architecture, they were surpassed by the Toltecs and decessors.
Colhuas.

The former

of these occupied the land

more than

a thousand

years before the Christian era.'


'

How much more


lib. ii.,

ancient were their previ., pp. 41S-420. Brasseur, Hist. Jii il/cMi/iie,

Stephens, Yucatan, vol.

ii.,

p. 377.

Kingsboroiigh, Mexico, vol.


cap.
i
;

Lizana, Hist, de Ntiestra Senora Je Itzamal.

quoted in Brinton's Myths, p. 222. Brasseur de Bourbourg says; " In the histories wriuen in the Nahualt language, the oldest certain date is 955 years before Christ." It is quoted from the Codex Chimalpopoca. and refers to
ii.,

p. 605,
^

a division of land, and

made

this necessary.

subject of

shows that they had been settlers in the land long before the civil war Quoted in Baldwin's Ancient America, p. 204. Baldwin examines the Antiquity more fully than these pages will allow.
it

40
decessors, the Colhuas,

History of the Cross

we have not the means at hand for ascertaining. Eubank writes: " I am not aware that there has been even a conjecture as to the date of these ruins. The concentric circles of some trees growing upon them mark 973 years, but how many
Concerning their
edifices,

centuries had elapsed from the ruin and desolation of the city, and for

the accumulation of the


conjectured.'

soil

over

it

ere this tree took root, can only be

Waldeck counted 1609


'

rings of annual

growth upon a

tree

which he felled."

Enough

for our

purpose that they were pre-Christian, and that the

cross as an honored

symbol appears frequently upon them.


was adored
as the

Among

the

later Me.xicans the cross

of rain.
Cross, the
of Rain,

SymboioftheGod

An

old chronicler,

emblem of Quiateot, the god when describing a temple, saith


:

"

At the

footc of this temple was a plotte like a church-

yard, well walled and garnished, in the midst whereof stoode


a crosse of ten foote long, the
for at all times

which they adored

for the

god

of

Rayne,

when they wanted

rayne, they would go thither in pro-

cession devoutly, and offer to the crosse quayles sacrificed, for to appease

the wrath that god seemed to have against them, and none was so acceptable a sacrifice as the blood of that
certain sweete
little

birde.

They used

to burn
it

gume, to perfume that god

withall,

and to besprinkle

with water, and this done, they believed assuredly to have rayne.""

Even to our day Mexican Indians.


secrated, as he

traces of this superstitition are preserved

among

the

Lieutenant Whipple,

in his

exploration for the route


cross, con-

of the Pacific Railroad

found boards erected bearing the Tau

was

told, to the

god

of rain.'

Among
ceived
its

the ancient Mexicans, the showery month, Quiahuilt, rethe weeping god, Quiateot, their Nisroch.

name from

Water,

as the generator,

was honored under the symbol


was taken from

of the cross in Cibola.

In Cozumcl, in time of drought, sacrifices of quails and incense were


offered to the cross, which
its

shrine in the temple and

borne
'

in

procession, as in the ancient Christian litanies.

The Aztecs

Eubank, Hydraulics, p. 164. North Am. Rev., vol. li., p. 428. ' The pleasant Historieof the conquest Translated of West India, now called A'ew Spain. out of the Spanish tongue by T. N., ibyS. It is curious to note the simil.-irity of a custom in Borera. one of the Hebrides. A stone cross was placed opposite the Church of S, Mary called the water cross. When the islanders wanted rain it was erected, when they had enough, it was laid down. Martin, Western Isles, p. 59; Brand, Antiquities, vol. iii., p. 169.
^ *

Whipple, Rep. for Exploration of the Pacific Railroad,

vol,

iii.

p. 40.

Before the Christian Era


offered a

41

more bloody
ilitl

sacrifice,

crucifying

with cruel mercy,

not suffer

them

to

young men and maidens, but, die upon the cross, but put them
of rain

to deatli witii .urows.


iiaiul,

The Aztec goddess

bore a cross
(Juetzalcoatl,

in

lier

ami

tlie

Tohecs claimed

that their deity,

taught

them the sign and

ritual of the cross,

hence his

staff,

or sceptre of power,

resembled a crosier, and his mantle was covered with red crosses.'

The
Eastern

actual cross
.it

was also used as an instrument of punishment


retnienunt of cruelty

in

Mexico, and,

times, with a

unknown

in

the

Hemisphere.

The

Itzaexes, a

tribe in Yucatan.

The Cross

enclosed the criminal


till

in a metallic cross,

which was heated

the poor wretch expired.^

Among
it

as an instrument of Punishment.

the Mexicans, judgof

ing from their pictures and

MSS.,

would appear that the usual form


for her religion to the

the cross of death was the S. ^Yndrew's. or Saltire.'

South America probably was indebted


race

same

who populated Mexico,


in

for

we

find the

Mexican
the

cross in

Popoyan
in south America.

and Cundinamarco,
seas in

New
its

Granada.'

Among

Muy-

cross

Cumana

it

was adored, and mothers placed their newprotection


against
evil
spirits.'

born children

under

When

the

Muyscas
lake,

sacrificed to the deity of water,


cross,

they stretched cords across a

forming a

and

at the intersection

threw

in offerings of gold,

emeralds, and precious

oils."

In an ancient hiiaco, or catacomb, there was found a syrinx, or pan-

dean pipes, cut out of a mass of lapis


with Maltese (Greek
Egyptian.'
?)

ollaris.

the sides were decorated


In Peru.

crosses

and other symbols resembling

The

Incas reverenced a cross

made out

of a

simple piece of jasper which had been bequeathed to them by an earlier


people.'
is

Upon

the side of one of the

little hills

which

skirt Pisco

Bay

an immense cross, about one hundred feet high, formed of stones inthe rock.

laid in

According to the native

priests,

it

was miraculously

the tradition

Doubtless, made by an angel to warn Pizarro from his wicked tyranny. is much younger than the cross; and the Peruvians had
learned enough from their conquerors from the old Christian world to

'

Gould, Myths,

vol.

ii.,

p.

loS

Brinton, Myths, etc., pp. 95, 96.

' '

W,ildeck, p. 24, quoted in Bradford's

Am.
;

Antiqs., p. 293.
pp.
I,

Kingsborough, M,:\ito,
Gould, Myths,
vol.

vol.

ii.,

p.

37

iii.,
"

43, 66.
p. 121.

*
' '

Brinton, Myths, etc., p. 95.


ii.,

Trans. Royal Soc, Edin., vol. xx.,

p. 107.

* '

Gould, Myths, vol,

ii.,

p. 107.
v., p.

Brinlon, Myths, p. 96,

Schoolcraft, Indian Tribes, part

659.

42

History of the Cross

invent a story fitting for the time to a marvel.

cross also once

adorned the Temple

of the

Sun

at

was found within a shrine

in that city.
it

Cuzco, and a massive one of marble Vega testifies that " although

the cross was not worshipped, yet

was held

in

great veneration."'

Crosses of copper, probably worn as amulets, were


Still

common.
in

farther south,
I

Martin Dobrizhoffer writes of a nation

Para-

guay: "
_ Cross in Paraguay.

saw not only a cross marked on the foreheads of the Abipones


but likewise black crosses woven in the red woollen t> ^ar-

mcnts

of

mauv.

It is

a surprising circumstance that they

did this before they were acquainted with the religion of Christ,

when

Emblems Found From

in the

Mounds

in the Mississippi

Blake's Tlu- Cross, Aiuifiit

and Ohio and Modein.

Valleys.

the signification and merits of the cross were

unknown

to them.

This

custom was handed down from

their ancestors."

Even
'

in
vol.

the extreme bounds of the continent the Patagonians tati.,

From

p.

65

vol.

ii.,

pp. 467, 46S.

"

Dobrizhoffer, Account of

t/u-

Abipones, vol.

ii.,

p. 20.

Before the Christian Era


tooed the holy sign upon their foreheads, because
it

43
was a custom
'

trans-

mitted from their forefathers " not derivciJ from Spaniards."

Among
riginal

the ruder nations of the Northern Continent are found aljo-

reUcs of the cross.

The

Mississippi

\'alley

is

rich in

Indian
among
Nort"

rein.uns.

Curiously shaped pieces of galena, which at

first

cross

were presumed to be money, but by modern archaeologists


are

Tribes

o^f

pronounced to be either ornaments or medals, have


aiisata,

America,

been found marked with the crux


other
relics,

and a vase containing, among


_.-._.t.-.-;';-;a^-=^=^5g==E=_

coin

or

medal

bearing a cross crosslet, was

dug

_=dS^^'^

'

\l

up

in 1844,

near Natchez.
in

''

The mounds
ous shapes.

the Ohio and

Mississippi valle\'s are of vari-

Some

resemble the

human

figure,

some animals,
for instance,

some serpents;
elevation
in

an

Adams

Cruciform

County, Ohio, represents a serpent seven


feet

Mounds.

hundred
Temple Mound, Lovedale, Kentucky. From Squier's Serpent Symbol in America.

long swallowing an egg';

others are circular, and


cruciform.

many are The circular mounds

may have been used


indicate their object.

as forts or habitations,

and the forms

of the others

or habitation,
likely that

The cruciform mounds, ill adapted for fortification Is it not for some other purpose. they were erected for sacrificial or religious intent ? Mounds of
must have been erected
and
civilization has,

a similar shape are not confined to this country,


less,

doubt-

obliterated

many

in

the Eastern Continent.

But the great resem-

blance between those of widely separated countries should be noted.

As

to the antiquity of these

it

is

impossible even to conjecture, as

they are the work of nations

who

lived so long before the race of Indians


Their Antiquity.

who inhabited
that even
all

this

country when visited by Europeans,

tradition of

them had been


in

lost.

The moundthan their successors.


p, 90. p.

builders were far


'

more advanced

ci\-ili/.ation
vol.
i,
i.,

King and
Dickeson,

Fitzroy, Narrntive of

Ten Years' Voyage,


pi.
iv.,
figs,

Am. A'umismafic Manual,


Monuments

ri,

43.

Dr. Anthun, in the

Numismatic and
'

Arc/i,Tological jfournal, 1S69, decides against their being coins.

Squier, Ancient

in the Mississippi Valley, p. 98.

44

History of the Cross


centuries must have elapsed before their once cuhivated fields,

Many

villages,

and mounds were covered with the immense


later red

forests

through
first

which the

man roved and hunted when

the white

man

visited him.

General Harrison has shown that the great diversity of


still

species of trees plainly indicates that the forests which

cover

many
more
in

of these sites are of second growth, as the primitive forests are

generalh- of one or of a few species.

Yet there are


at Marietta.

patriarchs,

for Sir

Charles Lyell mentions that eight hundred rings were counted

the

trunk of a tree growing on a

mound

Again, the skeletons of the mound-builders show, by their extreme


decay, immense age.

Human
The

remains

found near the surface are supposed to


be those of later Indians.
original

dwellers in the land are interred always

within the mounds, or near the bottom,

and these are so decayed as to crumble


to pieces

on removal.

Indeed, only one

skull of a

mound-builder has been pre-

served.'

Yet we know that human


sound and well preserved.
to be nearly

skeletons,
Temple Mound,
Marietta, Ohio.

aji

known

two thousand
, .

From

Squier's Sei'pcnt

Symbol in America.
soil

years old, have been found in England,

and other parts of Europe, although that damp


Other proofs
of antiquity

has been less fitted

for preservation than the dry, compact earth of the mounds.

might be adduced, such as the changes


of the

marked by the water-courses, and the evidence show that they had been worked
and yet, perhaps a
still

copper mines which

for a

long period before their desertion,

longer one has passed since then, as evinced by


;

the immense forest growth

but

it

is

needless to multiply proof.

We
Its

have only room to instance a few examples.^


In Tarleton, Ohio,
is

mound
It

in

the form of a Greek cross.

arms, ninety feet

in

length by three in height, are turned toward the

cardinal points of the compass.'


'

resembles an earthwork in the village

At a meeting of the American Association held at Dubuque, August 26, 1872, reported in it seems doubtful if they were of the original Their successors buried their dead in the mounds, but nearer the surface. mound-builders. ' Baldwin, Ancient America, chaps, i., ii., iii. N. Y. Tribune, August 27, 1S72. ^ Squier, Ancient Alonuments in Mississippi Valley, p. 98.
the Tribune, several other skulls were shown, but

Before the Christian


of Bail well, EiiL^laiid.

lira

45

Another proof

of the iini\-crsality of tlie cross

even

in

such monuments as these.

Simihir

mounds

arc found in WisMounds


in

consin and Oregon,


liquely.

some with the

trans\-erse
ill

placed obOhio.

Doubtless other examples w

be discovered west

of the Mississippi,

when the

areh;eologist, as well as the surveyor

and

miner, explore that region.

The

later tribes

who

iidiabited the Atlantic


re-

States used the figure of the cross in their


ligious rites.

The Lenni Lenape,


most numerous

once one
antl

of the

The Cross among the


Later Indians.

widely spread tribes on the

Atlantic coast, in their sacrifices for rain placed

"4^4^^
Kuiuan Mound near Llanwell, Wiltshire, England. From Sqn'ier's .4 >i/if!iiiifs 0/ .Vew
y'or/,-

upon

a figure of a cross

some red

stuff,

a gourd,
festi-

and some tobacco.

The

Creeks, at their

val of the Busk, a feast celebrated to the four

and //if

IVest.

winds, formed a cross out of four logs, pointing


to the cardinal points,

and

at the intersection built a


in

fire.'

That not a

link

may

be wanting

the chain which binds

all

nations,

Jew, Gentile, and Pagan, even the islands between the Western and Eastern Continents are hallowed h\ the " shadow of the
Cross
in Islands

Cross."
I

The

inhabitants of the Gambler Islands tattooed


1
I , 1

between the
Continents.

themselves with this emblem, and the discoverers of the

Mulgrave Islands were welcomed


and Easter.

b\-

natives decorated with necklaces

from which crosses were suspended.^


Viti,

So

also in

the isles of Tonga,

Two

colossal statues
in

from the

last,

upon

their backs, are

now

the British

Museum.

bearing the Tau Thus we have com-

pleted the circuit of the globe, and find this holy symbol with a sacred
signification in ages far apart
for the
all

and among nations widely separated, and,


each other's existence.'

most

part, utterly ignorant of

And

yet

embodying,

in a greater or less degree,


all

according to their advance in

civilization,

the primal truth of

religions
sacrifice,

adumbrating the great truth

of Christianity,
'

Redemption
x., p.

by

symbolized by the Cross.


etc., p. 126,

Hrinton, Myths, etc., p. 98.

"

Mavor, Vogagcs, vol

I5g

Beechey, Xarrative,

Ellin. Rev., vol. cxxxi., p. 231.

CHAPTER

II

TYPES OF THE CROSS


"
''

""HE

Law was
the sun
this

shadow

of

good

to come.
is

This good was Christ;


behind, the shadow
:

J_
before,

the law was a shadow; wlien the sun

is

when
;

is

before, the

shadow
before
. . .

is

behind

so

was

it

in Christ to

them

of old
:

Sun was behind, and therefore the Law


is
:

or

shadow was
or cere-

before

to us under grace the Sun

and

so

now the shadow

monies of the

Law

are behind.
after,

And

those that went before,


'

and they that followed

they

all

sang, Hosaiuia to the Son of God."

In the present chapter the magnitude of the " stumbling block " which

the Cross was to the Jews and Gentiles the scandal did not
in

is

explained, but the greatness of


of Christianity

one whit deter the early teachers

from preaching Christ, the promised Messiah

crucified, not only literally


vilest of criminals,

upon

Calvar}-, tlie
in

abhorred place of execution for the


liv^es

but also

type and shadow in the

of the patriarchs,

and

in

the

Law

and the Prophets.


to
its

Even Justin Martyr, although he knew

that he stirred

depths the prejudice of his adversary Trypiio, the Jew, especially


True,
in

urges the manner of the Sacrifice foreshadowed by the types.


their desire to

show

tliat all

the particulars of Christ's death were symto,

bolically set forth in the

Old Testament, the Fathers resorted

what

appears to
these
is is

us,

strained

and far-fetched images, yet the knowledge of

necessary to understand the expression of the love for Christ


exhibited
in

which

the literature and art of the medireval ages.

The types

of the Cross

deduced from the Holy Scriptures by the early

Christian writers
Classification

may

be

classified as:
;

Those which

refer to the material

of the Cross

Those which syinbolize


its

its

form; and. Those


last

ypes.

which shadow forth

triumph.'

The

class falls not

within our province.


'

To

cjuote a tithe of the references


i ,

by the Fathers
Sevpeut, p. T87.

Sutto!!, Lt'arjt to I ivc. chap,

sec.

14.

'^

Haslani, Cross

and

46

T\pcs of
relative to the otlicrs

the Cross
folio; therefore

47
only a few perti-

would require a

nent extracts

will

be given.
the most prominent in point of time and
in

Of the
portance,

first
is

class,

im-

the Tree of Life.

"

The Tree

of Life,

which was jjlanted

by God
Tree,

in Paradise, prefigures

the precious Cross," writes

Uamascenus, "
it

for after that

death was by the means of a


Life,

was needful that by a Tree should be given


'

and the Resurtree, as the


'^^^ Palm.

rection."

Like the Tau cross, representations of a sacred


life, ...

symbolical source of

palm (lluvnix dactylitcra] was thus cmployetl by the


1

,,,,.,

long preceded Christianit)-.


, , 1

The
a stele, preserved

T-

Lg_\-pt-

ians,

and by them transmitted to other nations.

On

in the Berlin

Museum, found by

Dr. Lepsius in the village of Abousir,


is

near the Great Pyramid, the jjalm

thus delineated:
the bread of
life

From
life

its

stem

proceed two arms, one administers

fruit or

to a kneel-

ing person, the other pours from a vase the water of


of the recipient.

into the

mouth

The date of the stele is at least fifteen hundred years The sacred symbolism of the palm was recognized under both dispensations in the Holy Scriptures. Solomon adorned the Tembefore Christ.
ple with its representations,

and

to S.

John

in

Patmos was revealed


and yielded her

the Tree of Life which bare twelve


fruit

manner

of fruits,

every month, and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations " (Rev. xxii., 2). So of the palm it was believed that it put forth
a shoot every

month, and, as

its

leaves were used for writing purposes,


inscribed

the words of the Gospel

may have been


There
is

upon them.
the mosaic in the apse

The
of S.

early

and medijeval Christian

artists

frequently represented the


in

Tree of Life as a palm.

an example
tree
is

John Lateran
is

at

Rome.

The

guarded by an angel.
),

Upon

a branch

perched a phcenix (the symbol of iinmortality


its

an aureole

surrounding

head; and the

first

two persons

of the

Holy Trinity
as synonPalm Synonymous with
the Cross.

stand on either side.

As the Cross was sometimes more than a symbol, being used ymous with Christ, so also was the palm-tree. In an Evaiigcl' r
>

iitiii

of the ninth century, in the British

Museum,
and
il

a miniature

represents the four Evangelists gazing up to a palm on the top


of

which
'

is

placed the cross, with the

suspended from

its

arms.^

John Damascenus, Orthodox Fidei, lib. iv., c. 12. See Dr. Barlow's able article in The Builder, Oct. 30, 185S. In the Assyrian sculptures the winged figures personifying principles of the Deity are placed on each side of a palm-tree.
S.
'

48
Noah's ark was
is

History of the Cross


a favorite type of the cross
lie

among
new

the Fathers.

Justin

Martyr says: " For Christ, thougli


creature,
Noah's Ark a

was the

first

begotten of every

also again

made

the autlior of a

race,

who

are regener-

ated through him by water and faith, and wood, which was
3.

Type of the Cross.

type of the

cross,

even as Noe was saved by wood, sailing

on the water with


says,
'

his family.
I

Wherefore when the prophet


I

In the time of

Noe have

saved thee,' as

said before, he speaks


'

to a people that were faithful to

God, and had these types."


"

The next type


The Wood

is

derived from the history of Isaac.

clearer type
in

can scarcely be conceived of the Saviour of the world,


of
ce.

whom
.
.

all
.

nations of earth were to be blessed, than Isaac was.


'piiL-cefore Isaac

bearing the wood, did signify Christ bearing the Cross," says Bishop Pearson, adding, " this is not only the observation of the Christians, but the Jews themselves have referred to this type

unto that custom

for

upon Gen.
laid
it

xxii.,

'

And Abraham
his son
'

took the wood

of the burnt offering

and

upon Isaac

the lesser Bereshith


his

hath

this

note,

'

as a

man

carries his cross

upon

shoulders.'
it

"'

Isaac in this prefigured the Saviour's sacerdotal capacity, for


of the priest's
It
ofifice

was part

to carry the

wood

to the altar.'
is

may be

objected that the symbolism


slain,

not perfect from the fact


is

that Isaac
Death, the
not of God.

was not
filled.

but

in

truth the figure

the more closely

ful-

Work

Isaac

fell

not by his father's hand, because


is

God

in

of the Devil,

tlic

Scripturcs clearly points out that death

not His work,

but that of the adversary, the devil.


death,
neither hath

" For

God made

not

He

pleasure

in

the

destruction

of

the living.''

(Wisdom of Solomon i., 13.) " God created man to be immortal, and made him to be an image of his own eternity. Nevertheless, through envy of the devil came death into the world." (//'., ii., 23, 24.)* S.
Gregory
also assigns as a reason, " In this sacrifice for us,

He

died as to
*

His humanity, but His immortality remained from His divinity."


holding
in their

hands a pine cone, as the PZgyptian


connection with
it,

deities

do the

cri/x ansiita.

Tiie cones point


is

towards the
'

tree, significant of a

as the source from which divine life

derived.

The words quoted probably refer to Isa. liv. There is a mystery in the very name of the vessel appointed by God for the salvation of his 8, 9. chosen race. On the symbolical meaning of the name Ark, see the note at the end of this chapter. Pearson on the Creed, art. iv. note, p. 303, London ed., 1839,
Justin Martyr, Dialog, with Trypho, % cxxxviii.

,
''

Origen in Gen., Horn.,

8.

Of course
it,

lessons from
'

S.

the Apocrypha is not cited as positive proof, yet the Church and the interpretation given above is not strained. Gregory in Ezek. lib. i., Horn. 6.
,

selects, at times,

Types of
The

the Cross

49
in

gist of patristic interpretation


:

may

be

summed up

the words
that
lie

of S. Rjihraim

" Isaac ascended the mountain bearing the


like

wood
S.

might be immolated

an innocent lamb, and the Saviour

went up Mount Calvary that


for us.

He

Ephraim.

might be offered as

lamb
knife),

When

thou conteniplatest the sword (Abraham's

con-

sider the lance.

upon the Cross.


love and desire
in
;

When When

thou lookest upon the wood,

let th_\'

mind dwell

thou seest the

fire,

embrace

in

thy thoughts the

and when thou beholdest the ram caught by the horns

the plant Sabec, behold the

Lamb

of

God, see

Him

with pierced hands

hanging from the Cross.


remission, or liberation.

The plant called Sabec is, by interpretation, The old man dismissed, and liberated, his son
The
rain

from slaughter, designating the Cross which remitted sins to the world

and ministered

life

to

it.

suspended

in

the shrub Sabec alone the

mystically liberated Isaac, but the

Lamb

of

God suspended upon


'

cross liberated the world from death antl hell."

The change of type from Isaac to the ram presents no difficulty. " Both Isaac who was not slain, and the ram which was slain, were types of Christ crucified. The first represented him in his divine nature, Substitution of
^

which died not, and


he exercised
purely
S.
in
it

in his

sacerdotal office, or capacity, as

the Ram for Isaac in Type.

upon the

cross; the second exhibited

him
was a
sacrifice.'"

his

human
and

nature, and only so far as he

Augustine supposes that the thicket was of


of thorns,
S. Basil finds in
is it

briars, prefiguring the

crown

the type of the nails.'

In mcdia;\-al art Isaac

frequenth' represented as bearing the


seen
in

wood

arranged as a cross, as
of of

may be
in

the sculptures in the west porch


in

Notre-Dame
Notre-Dame
centur_\-.'

in in

Rheims;

a windowin

the north aisle


Isaac in Art.

Chartres; and also

window
is

in

the

Cathedral of Bourges, from which our illustration


teenth
'

taken.

Date, thir-

S.

Ephraim, Serm. de Abraham.


8.

Origen, in loc, Horn.


S. Chrysost., in

S.

Amlirose,

De

Ahrahatn,

lib.

i,

c.

S,

77.

S.

Aug., Ps. 51,

5.

loc, Horn. 47, etc.

Paulinus considers the lamb to have been a prelude

to the Paschal

brose thinks the

Abraham,
^

lib.

lamb which was in itself a type of Christ crucified. Ep. 10, ad Sever. S. Amram was chosen as best representing the Prince, or Leader of the Flock. De i, c. 8, 77. Parker, Bibliotheca BihlUa, Gen. xxii., 13.

S. .-Vug.,

De

Civ. Dei., lib. xvi,

c.

31 (chap. 32 in

Eng. Trans., 1610).

S. Basil, Seleuc.

Oral., 7, p. 43.

that this

Prosper traces the analogy of the types, and literal Sacrifice, and concludes was the Day of Christ which " Abraham saw, and was glad." S. John viii., 56.
S. et

De Prom,
V. 12, 13,
*

Pradict. Dei., par.

I,

c.

17.

S.

Ambrose,

lib. i., c. S,

g 77, 78.

S. Chrysos., in

Horn., 47.

Parker, Biblio. Bib.. Gen.


i.,

xxii., 13.

Didron, Christ. Icon., vol.

p.

370 and note.

59

History of the Cross


The
ladder in Jacob's dream, is, strictly speaking, rather a type of through whose intercession the angelic powers are " ministers to

Him

the heirs of salvation " (Heb.


Jacob's Ladder.

i.

14),

than of the instrument

of

His

sacrifice,

yet the early Christian writers, as well as

the

artists,

often use the Cross as

synonymous with the


S.

Crucified,

and

frequentl}- refer to this figure.

Jerome considers the descendof

ing angels as typical of the Jews,

the

ascending,

the

Gentiles.'

Bosio symbolizes the height, width,


length, and depth of the Cross, as
love,
faith
;

good works,

discipline,

and

the four steps in the ladder

of the Christian's Cross."

Concerning the rod

of Moses,

the Fathers are voluminous in their


. The _ Rod
.

f of

comments on

it

as a

Moses.
Isaac Carrying the

type of the Cross. Oripith.

Wood.
Lord.

gen concisely gives the

On

From Jameson's History of our

serpent-changed rods (Ex.


tures as a

vii., 12),

the swallowing up of the magicians' hesays, " The serpent is used in Scrip(S.

symbol

of

wisdom and knowledge

Matt,

x., 16;

Gen.

iii.,

i),

and Moses' rod being changed, devoured those


which

of the magicians.

Thus

the Cross of Christ, the preaching of which seemed foolishness, and


is

typically lodged in the writings of Moses,


'

according to our
Cross,
I

Lord's saying,

For he wrote

of
is,

me

'

(S.
it

John

v., 46), this

say,

being cast on the ground, that


lief

after

once reached the faith and be-

of the world,

was turned into wisdom, and into such marvellous and


as

mighty wisdom
'

devoured

all

the

wisdom
cap.
5.

of Egypt, that

is,

of this

S.

Jerome, Ps. gi.

'
'

Bosio,

La Trionfante

Gloriosa Croee,

lib. iii.,
it

In the Traditionary Hist, of the Cross


It
it

the Tree of Life in Paradise.

shown that Moses' rod was made was handed down hy the patriarchs to Joseph.
is

of a part of

After his

was seized by Pharaoh. Jethro being friendly to the Israelites, secretly conveyed it away and planted it in his garden. When Moses took refuge with Jethro, and was beloved by Zipporah, she prevailed upon her father to consent to the marriage on condition that Moses
death
could pluck from the ground the rod fzaphirj, which none of her other suitors could move.

Moses perceived
nounce.

that

upon
vol.

it

Hence he was

able to perform the miracle.


ii.,

was written the sacred Tetragrammatoti which he only could proModie's What is Your Name ?^ p. 167.
p. 183, note.

See also Sale's A'oran,

Types
world.

of the Cross
figure) tlie Cross of Christ,
'

51

The

rod of Moses

is (in

by which the

workl
S.

is conquered and its princes triumphed over." Augustine says, " The Cross which is beheved to be foolishness to

the infidels,

is
it

turned against the serpent, that


all

is,

wisdom, and
"

in

sacred

knowledge

devoured

the

wisdom
in

of the world."
so, as

Severianus supdid the Jews wilh

poses that when Aloses struck the rock, he did


the blood of the Paschal lamb, "

the shape of the cross, that even

nature and inanimate things might \'eiierate the Cross, for the king being
absent,
S.

we venerate the image of the king. The sign is sufficient."" Augustine further writes, Moses did nothing without " the wood of

the sacrament.
that

God despised not the aid of the rod, we might know the mystery of the wood to come,
in

but ennobled

it,

a shadow of the
to be divided,

sacrament figured

the rod."
lift

"

If

the

Red Sea was


and the
sea,

Moses was commanded to


figure of the

up

his rod,

recognizing the
If

wood

to

come, opened a safe path to the people.*


it

he

came

to the bitter waters of Marah. unless

received the

wood

within

itself, it

was not sweetened.

Which thing was


is

a sign, through the use


If

of the Cross, the bitterness of nations

was to be turned to sweetness.

the people have not water to drink, the rock


a virtue imparted which
it

struck by the wood, and


If
is

had not

b_\-

nature.

the cruel host of


to hold

Amalek
Cross, are

is

to be slain, Joshua, the son of

Nun,

commanded
in

the rod in his hands, and Moses stretches his arms

the shape of the

and thus by means of the figure of the Cross the invincible enemies
^

overcome." " God was pleased," says


staff,

S.

Antony, " to make choice


in his

of

Moses'

shepherd
'

or crook,

which was always

hand, to give him the

The rod was Origen in Ex., c. 7, Horn. 4., compare S. An;;., Dc Tempore, ser. 86, 87. symlml of power. " The rod of Moses in his hand and antecedently to the change of it, implied the state of the Hebrews in Egypt as long as Joseph flourished and ruled there, swaying,
a
it were, the very sceptre of that kingdom. This rod cast on the ground, signified the servile and abject condition of the Hebrews after Joseph's death, when they were tied down to continual hard labor in clay and brick and being turned into a serpent it was very obviously a The rod rerepresentation of this people as abhorred, and worried by the Egyptians. stored to itself again, expressed that happy change when they were delivered from their slavery,

as

and obtained not only liberty, but power and rule." Lyr. Tost. Perer. Parker, Biblio. Bib. Ex. iv. 3. Serpent, the symbol of wisdom ; see also Bunsen's Keys of S. Peter.
,

"

S.

Aug.,

De

Temp.,

ser. 86, 87.

Sever., Oral. 4 In Cruce, etc.

Orat. 3

De

Imagine.
Parker, Biblio. Bib., Ex.
21.

There
S.

is

a tradition

among
ser.

the Jews, that the sea was divided into twelve openings for
iv.
.

the separate recejition and safety of each tribe.


'

Aug.,

De Temp.,

lot, 90, Horn. 27, 50.

52

History of the Cross


keep
liim

sign, or test, of a miracle, to

mindful of his sometime obscure


not done by the column

condition.
Moses" Rod.

The opening
of fire, or the
.

of the

Red Sea was

Shechinah, but by Moses' rod."


.

the special ensign of power.

Moses had

^,,, his,

The

rod

is

andia Aaron,

Pharaoh, and Nebuchadnezzar

theirs,

saith S. Hilary.'
is

" This rod of

Moses by which
serpent,

Egp_\-t
is

was subdued

in a figure

the Cross of Christ,

by which the world


if

conquered," saith Origen.^

" Death came by the

so,
''

wood

in

the serpent showed Christ crucified," writes S.

Augustine.
into a rod,

Again the rod turning into a serpent, and being returned


S. Cyril.'

showed the Resurrection, argues


of

And
As
in

also the rod


S.

and the serpent were emblems


says, the serpent

power and wisdom.

Ambrose

was a symbol of the divine wisdom

the decree and

economy of Christ crucified.'' The Jews admitted that the brazen

serpent had a symbolic meaning

the mystery of which they could not understand.


Brazen Serpent.
, , 1 rypho.
.^, 1

So confessed one

of

the Jews present at the discussion of Justin Martyr with


j

he true significance

of the

Wisdom
. .

of
.

Solomon, who

recognized by the author terms the brazen serpent " a sign of salis
it

r-

-111

vation.

For he that turned himself toward

was not saved by


(Wis-

the thing

tliat

he saw, but by thee, that

art the Sa\"iour of all."

dom
ing

xxi., 6, 7.)

it

personally.

Our Blessed Saviour himself quoted the figure, apply" The lifting up of the serpent is (S. John iii., 14.)

the death of Christ," saith S. Augustine, " the cause, by a certain


of construction, being put for the effect.
.

mode

Our Lord, however,

did not transfer sin,

z.

r.,

the poison of the serpent, to his flesh, but

death, in order that, in the likeness of sinful flesh, there might be pun-

ishment without

sin,

by

virtue of which sinful flesh


'

might be delivered
therefore the ser-

both from punishment and from sin."

" Christ

is

pent," says Nicetas, " like as in the similitude of sin

He was made
Christ,

man."

And

again, "
it

The brazen

serpent was not verily a serpent, but


In the
of us,

the figure of one,

had no venom.
of sin,

same manner,

who

had not the venom


'

was not one


42.

who

bear the form of a ser-

S.

Hilary in Ps. 134, Col. 405.


c. 7, /A'tii. 4, p.

Origeii in Exodus,
S.

^ *
* '

Aug.

in Ps. 73,

5.

S. Cyril, Catech., i8. S.

Parker, Biblio. Bib., Ex.

iv., 3, 4.

18. Parker, Biblio. Bib., Justin Martyr, Dialog, with Trypho, 94. S. Aug., quoted in Catena Aiirea, S. John iii., 14.
Ps. 108, ser, 6,

Ambrose,

Num.

xxi., 8.

Types of
pent."
'

the Cross
" Sec then
tlie

53
apt-

That

is,

have the poison of wickedness.


tlie

ness of the figure," exclaims Theophylact, "

figure of the serpent


;

has the appearance of the beast, but not


Christ

its

poison

in

the same
"

way

came

in

the likeness of sinful

flesh,

being free from sin."


S.

That the

early

Church

full\-

understood the type,

Augustine shows

when he writes, "

To

prefigure His Cross, Moses,

by the merciful comin

mand

of

God

raised aloft

upon

a pole the

image of a serpent

the desert,

that the likeness of sinful flesh,

which must be crucified

in Christ,

might

be prefigured."

'

Another witnesses: "


of the Cross of the

If

any one feigneth not to see that the image

of the brazen serpent, after the

manner

of

one hanging, signified

type
is,

Lord

which was to deliver us from serpents, that


it

from the angels of the Devil, while


serpent which had been slain by
its

hanged up the Devil, that


(or

is,

the

means

whatever other interpretaas-

tion of tliat figure hath been revealed to

more worthy men), so long

the

apostle declareth that all tilings happened at that time to the people in a

figure

(i

Cor. x.

ii).

am

content that the same

God who

in

the Law-

forbade any likeness to be made, should by a special mandate have inter-

posed His

command

that the likeness of a serpent should be

made.

If

thou obeycst the same God, thou hast His law.


likeness

Thou shall not make the

of any thing,

if

thou regardest also the

command touching

the

likeness

made

afterwards, do thou also follow Moses' example, and not


to the law, unless

make any image contrary


wise."
*

God command

thee like-

Yet another

says,

"

It

may seem

unaccountable that they should be


in

commanded

to look

up to a serpent

order to their safety.

Why

not

rather to Heaven, or to the Tabernacle, or to the holy things reposited


therein, to the ark, or the

mercy
?

seat, or the

cherubim, or the

altar, or

the candlestick, or the veil

Why

not any of these rather than an


little

imase, whether craven or cast, which Moses had but so


forbidden absolutely to be made.
that
it

time before
of this but

What

then can

we make

was a type of our Saviour's crucifixion as himself hath told us ? But still it may be asked why the figure of a serpent should be chosen
'

Nicetas in notes ad 2 Oral, in Pascha. Greg. Razianzen.

' '

Theophylact,
S.

in loc..

Catena Atirea,

S.

John

iii.,

14.

Aug..

Ps. cxix., V. 123., vol. v., p. 430,


c.

Oxf. Trans.

S.

Aug. on

S.

John, Horn,

xii.,

also S. Aug., City of God, b. x,


*

8.

TertuUian on Idolatry,

vii., 6.

54
for a

History of the Cross


type of Christ
of
?

answer that
di\'ine

this serpent
in

was a symbol, or

emblem,

wisdom, of the

wisdom

the decree and

economy

of
in

Christ crucified.

And

as this brazen serpent

had nothing of poison

Sacrifice of Isaac.

The Brazen

Serpent.

The Crucifixion. From Twining's Symiois of Early and Mfd'uvval


it,

Christian Art.

so the blessed antitype


3),

was sent
liii.,

in

the likeness of sinful flesh (Rom.


'

viii.,

yet without sin (Isa.


illustration
'

9)."

The

is

from a book of the fifteenth century,


Num.
xxi., S.

in

the British

Severian., quoted in Parker's Bihlio. Bib.,

Types of
Museum.
the type

the Cross

55

The Venerable Bede


in ait in Eiii^land.

gives us early authority for the use of

In A.I). 677, the monasteries of S. Peter at


J

Wearmoutli, and
adorned
it

S.

Paul's at

arrow were founded by


in

S.

Hennel who

with man)- pictures disposed

such a manner as to repre-

sent the harnion_\- between the Old and

New

Testaments, and the con-

formity of the figures, the one with the reality of the other; thus Isaac
carrying the
plained
fice,

wood which

-was to

make

the sacrifice of himself, was exliicli


b_\-

b\'

Christ carrying the Cross on w

he was to
our Lord's
at

finish his sacricrucifi.xion.

and the br<i/en serpent was illustrated


t_\-[)e

"

'

Another
interprets
it:

is

the

wood

cast into the


is

water

Marah.

S.

Ambrose

"

By

the bitter water


of Christ,

designated the

Law

of Moses, but

by the wood the Passion '


the

which was completed by 1J


out of

Wood

wood

of the Cross.

The people who came

Egypt

Cast in the Pooi of

Marah.

found bitter water because they received the law \\hich


they were not able to
fulfil,

but to the Gentiles coming to the faith of


is

Christ the bitterness of the law

changed through the Passion and


Others of the Fathers consid-

Resurrection of Christ into sweetness."^


ered the calamities of
life

figured b\- the bitter waters which are sweet-

ened by the grace of the Cross, the sign of which


Baptism, by which also

we

receive in holy

we

are revivified, even as those dying of thirst in

the wilderness are refreshed by living water.'

Concerning the cluster of grapes borne by the spies of

Lsracl as

an

earnest from the Promised Land, S. Augustine writes, " For e\en the

Divine

Word may

be understood by the grape;


called a cluster of grapes,

for the

The cluster
or Grapes,

Lord even has been


that were sent before

which they

by the people

of Israel
it

brought from the land of


'

promise hanging on a

staff crucified as

were."

" Jesus Christ

is

the

cluster," says S. Gregory, " exhibiting himself

on the wood that bore


saints in order to their

Him

up,

whose blood

is

joyfully drank
of

by the
'

salvation in the

Kingdom

Heaven."

The two

bearers are sometimes

taken for the Old and New Testaments. S. Ephraim considers them as " Prophets and Apostles."' Perhaps the interpretation typical of the
'

'

Twining, Symbols of Early and Mcdiisval Christian Art. S. Ambrose, Super. Apocal., c. 6.
S. .'\ug., in loc, S.
Tertiil.

p. S8.

'

ad

yiidcos. c. 13.

*
'

Aug., Ps.

8.

S. Greg.,
S.

Nyssm,

in Cant. Cor.. Horn.


xviii.,

3.

'

Ephraim, Rhythum,

note K., Oxf. Trans.

56
of
S.

History of the Cross


Ambrose
not,
is

better:

"

The one who preceded was

the Jewish

Church, heralding by type and propiiecy the coming Messiali, yet saw

Him

and despised Him; the bearer who followed was the Gentile

which had

Him

constantly before his eyes."

'

The window

vine and grapes naturally

commended themselves
is

to

art.

In a

of Lullingstone Church, Kent, England, Christ

represented

nailed to a vine in the form of a

or Pall cross rising from


is

the middle of a cistern, from one side of which water


flowing.

People of

all

ranks approach and some are


let

filling vessels.

A
the
37).

monk
text,

is

digging a channel to
ani

the water flow freely.


to

Above

is

"If

man

thirst,
is

come

me and

drink " (S. John

vii.,

The date

of the glass

about 1520.^
is,

A type
The Two

more

familiar in art than in the writings of the Fathers


of Sarepta

the

action of the
Sticks

Widow

when, gathering two


is

sticks to dress food


S.

for herself

and son, she

met by

Elijah.

Augustine
tlie sticks.

fj'""^'^,''^ Widow of Sarepta.

"" explains the i


,-,Qt-

woman

as typifying the Church, y 1 &

and

only in material but number, the Cross."

The medi.'Eval artists seized the tradition that the Widow held the wood in the form of a cross, and perpetuated it, as in the windows of Notre-Dame in Chartres, and on the sculptures at Rheims.' The cross is generally represented as a Saltire. The illustration is from a window in the cathedral of Bourges and is of the thirteenth century. The cross is of a green color, as is frequently the case when the symbolic, and not
the actual tree
S.
is

represented.
stafT of

Augustine also draws a simile from the


child of the

Elisha

when

laid

upon the dead


staff of Elisha.

Shunamite woman.

"

The

staff

without
is

Elisha avails naught, because the Cross \\ithout Christ


powerless.

Therefore the blessed Ehsha ascends into the


tliat

chamber, as Christ ascends upon the Cross, Elisha bows himself


child

the

may

be resuscitated, so Christ humbled himself that he might raise


in sin.

up the world lying


himself that he

See

how
up
in

this

man
dead

of perfect
child.

age contracts
Elisha pre''

may

agree with this

little

What
race."

figured in the boy, Christ filled


'

the whole
See also
is

human

S.

Ambrose,

ser.

72

Df

h'atale,

S.

Cyprian.

S. Isidore,

Num.

xi.,

and others.
Promised

Archcsological yoitrtial, 1856.


the grapes.
1.

The

blessed Virgin

sometimes compared
Contra Faiisliim,

to the

Land whirh produced


'

S.

Augustine,

in lib.

Ilomiliarum, Honi.
vol.
i.,

18, ft

Honi
'

lib. xii, c.

34.

'

Didron, Christ, /ton.,

p.

37 and note,

S.

Aug.,

De

Tempore,

ser. 206.

Types of
These are only
Aaron's rod

the Cross

57

a part of the types in

which the warmth of early Christof the Cross.


'I'iie

ian love deliylited to trace the


tiiat

mystery
,

cUib of Cain,
other Types.

budded, Rahab's
(iideon
s

scarlet cord, the nail of


s

the tent used

Ijy Jael,

oak, David

staff

and

his

judgment
service.'

seat, the

axe rescued by Mlisha,

etc.,

were pressed intu the

And although
representations

these typical and allegorical

may appear strained


and
far-fetchetl
' '

tn
in

us,

they were

used

com-

pliance with the custom


of those times,
their use

and had

amongst those
familiarsort

who had been


ized

to

that
"

of

argument."

The types
Cross
in

of

tlie

the

New Testais

ment

are few' yet sig-

nificant.

Prominent

that of the bier of the

Window
S.

in

Cathedral at Bourges.

From Twining's

Symbols.

son of the

Widow

of Nain.

Ambrose

says, "

There was hope


cross
in

of his
of the

rising again, because '^

he was borne on wood, which though *=


that
, ,

Types

before
it
1

it

did not benefit us, yet after Christ had touched


profit
1

the

New

Testament.

began to

unto

life,
1

it

might be a sign that

salvation
.1

was to be extended to the people by the wood


1 t

1.1
**

of
i-

The Bier
son

of the of the

the Cross.

/^

A As

a later writer remarks:

TT

Here

-L

it

is

not

Widow

of Nain.

the dead that

the dead child.

He touches, but He touches us


'

the bier; like the staff of Elisha, laid on

but through the


is

wood

of his Cross;

His

communication

of Himself to us

through the dead, and dead-bearing

but life-giving wood."

A
Lake
'

happy similitude
of Genneseret.

is

that of the ship tossed


is

upon the waves


in
iii.

of the

"It

necessary that

we should be
Croce, lib.
ii.,

the ship,"

For
S.

a fuller account of these types see Bosio,

La Trionfante

'

Prelim. Diss, to Brown's Trans, of yustin Martyr, p.

ed. 1846.

Ambrose,

in

Lucan. cap.

7.

Isaac Williams,

Our Lord's Ministry, Second

Year, p. 103.

58
saith S. Augustine, "

History of the Cross


but this

wood in which our infirmities are carried, is the Cross of Christ, in which we are signed and saved from the " The wood of the Cross is the Ship on Lake of drowuiug of thc world."
'

Gcnneseret.

^j^jp ^^ ^^^^

safety,"

'

saith S.

Ambrose.
Hilary de-

Frequent reference

is

made by

the Fathers to the hght which was to


S.
is

The Candlestick on which the stand

be placed not under a bushel, but upon a candlestick. clares, ' Thc lamiK, /. t\, Christ Himself,

set

upon
to

its

when suspended on
S.

the Cross in His Passion, to give

light forever to those that dwell in the

Church

all

that

arc in

the house. "^

Augustine, commenting on the Passion, says,


that very cross

"

The Lord commended


;

by bearing
*

it

upon His shoul-

ders

and

for that candle

which was to be lighted and not to be put

under a bushel, the Lord bore the candlestick."

There are other types made use


fetched, and

of

by the Fathers, but they


omission.'^

are far-

want

of space

compels their

The second
one
is

class of types refer to the

form of

tlie

Cross.
of

A striking
Jacob when

adduced by TertuUian, interpreting the action


blessing the sons of 'loseph. ^ ^

Second Class of Types Referring to Form.

" His hands being laid upon q i their hcads and interchanged, and turned indeed crosswise,
the one over the other, so that, representing Christ in a

figure they

might even then foreshow the blessing


S.

to be

accomplished

in

Christ.""

Augustine beautifully alludes to


"

this t}-pe
. .

when

apostro-

phizing divine wisdom.

O Thou

Light

which Jacob saw,

when

blind through great age, with illumined heart, in the persons of his

sons, shed light on the different races of the future people, in


signified
;

them

fore-

and

laid his

hands mystically crossed, upon his grandchildren

by Joseph, not

as their father
'

by

his

outward eye corrected them, but as

himself inwardly discerned."

The Jews,
Blood of the Paschal Lamb,

as has already been stated,

marked the posts and


lamb
in

lintels

'^^

their doors with the blood of the Paschal

the form

gf ^]jg y^^^j cross.'

"

And
^

the lamb concerning which this

precept
'

is

given," says Justin Martyr, " should be roasted whole, a

S.
S.

Augustine,

De

Diversis, ser. 22.

S.

^Kmbrose,
v.,

De

Spiritii Sanctu, lib.

i.,

cap. 8.

'

Hilary, quoted in Catena Aurea, S. Matt,

15,

* S.
'
* '

Augustine on

S.

John, Honi.

cxvii.,

3.

See Bosio,

La Trionfante
viii
;

Croce, lib.

iii.,

cap. 28,

and Gretser,

De

Crucc,

lib. i.,

cap. 47.

TertuUian on Bapt., S. Angus,, Confess.,


See chap,
i.,

Tertul. also applies the action, crossed hands, to Confirmation.


p. 211,

x.,

g 52,

Oxf. Trans.
i.,

also Didron, Christ, /coiiog., vol.

p. 370.

Types of
tj'pe of tliat

the Cross

59
For
is is

puni>linuMU of the Cross which Christ was to uinlcrLjo.


roasting
is

a Limb

wiit'ii it is

like the figure of a cross; for

one

spit

run

straight through from tlie lower parts to the head,

and another
'

run

through the back, on wiiich the shoulders of the lamb do hang."

Bisho[)

C,
ross.

Pearson, quoting the abo\'e, consitlers


1

it

no " far-fetched

figure of the

S.

Cyprian, exiiorting martyrs to patience, instances Moses passing

the whole day in prayer and elevation of his hands.


of perseverance," he declares ^
'

"

Which example
.,,

is

written, " because


is

Moses

to
his

overcome Amalek, who


hands

in

figure

the de\il, elevated

The Posture of Moses' Hands

when

Israel

was he able to overcome

111

in

the sign and sacrament of the Cross.

1-1 -11 his adversaries but by stability m


1

Neither
-1-

Overcame
Amalek.

the sign, therefore he persevered in the elevation of his hands." S. Augustine also often employs this type, cx.g)-., Moses, " the friend of

God, who overcame the enemy, e.xtended

his

hands to Heaven, even then


*

exhibiting the figure of the Cross of Christ."

Among

the ancient Jews was preserved, unconsciously, another type. written with three jots within a circle and
of the coins of
, .

The unspeakable Name was


beneath the sacred Tau.
SO inscribed, aiul
of gold
it

,...,, saul that


is

Many

Samaria are
Tetragrammaton.
jilate

this

was graven on the

worn on

tlie

forehead of the High Priest.

Bede and

others, re-

ferring to the figure

and

its

position, consider

it

as a type of the Cross,


I

and adopt the words of


in

S. Paul,

"

God

forbid that
\i., 14).'

should glory save


It

the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ " (Gal.

may have been

some
literal

lingering recollection of this sign which assisted in prompting the


figuring of the cross on the
of the Cross

brow by some

early Cliristians."

The form
it:

was likewise

typified in the

number

three hun-

dred which was the numerical value of Tau.

S. Barnabas thus speaks of

"Understand,

therefore,

children,
first

fully, that

Abraham, who was the


in

more ... that brought


these things
in cir-

The Number

300.

cumcision looking forward


'

the spirit of Jesus circumcised, having


I,

re-

Justin Martyr, Dialog, with Trypho., sec,


16S and note, Oxf. Trans.
art. iv.
;

xl.;

see also S. PZphraim.

Rhythum,

xviii.,

3, p.
'

Pearson on the Creed,


S.

'

S.

Cyprian,

Dc

Exort. Martyrum.

*
' '

Aug.

Bede,

De quinqiie Hitresilics Dc Tabcrnaculo. lib. ii.,


,

see also Justin Martyr, ii^ 90, III,


21.

and note

in translation.

c.

Hede speaking of Pharaoh's signet ring which he gave

to Joseph, refers to the Cross

which
the

the Christian wears as a seal on his forehead and in his heart.

Baptism,

is

called by

Fathers "

The Lord's

Signet," "

The Church's

Seal,

"

etc.

6o

History of the Cross


For Scripture
says, that

ceived the mystery of three letters.

Abraham
But what
?

circumcised three hundred and eighteen

men

of his house.

was therefore the mystery that was made known unto him
first,

Mark,
let-

the eighteen and next

tlie

three hundred.

For the numerical

ters of ten

and eight are

I.

H., and these denote Jesus, and because the


to find grace, therefore he adds three

Cross was that by wliich

we were
is

hundred, the note of which


the engrafted
gift of

T, the figure of His Cross.


us,

He who
I

has put

His doctrine within


I

knows

that

never taught to
it."
'

any one a more certain truth; but

trust that

ye are worthy of
of

Three hundred and eighteen was the number

Abraham's servants
Priest to

when, having conquered the four kings, he met Alelchizcdec, and did
-,

Number
.

of Abra-

...

homage ^

to

him

as the tvijical Great - l


tithes.

High -^

whom

ham's Servants

Lgyj should pay

Three hundred, the number Tau, were the chosen men

of

Gideon,

who
roen.

destroyed
.

Midian,'"' of

whom

Paulinus remarks, not the number or

,^.. , And of Gideon

valor of the legion, but the sacrament of the Cross, ex^

pressed

in

the numeral for three hundred, Tau, overcame


in

their enemies.'

"

By the three hundred, comprised


it

the letter

Tau

(which bears a resemblance to the cross),


of the

is

expressed that the sword


*

enemy

is

overcome by

tlie

wood

of the Cross."

Bosio reminds us that the verv form of anointing the


The Anointing of the High

High

Priest

was

typical.

While the unction of kings was


in

somewhat
of the

like a
in

crown,

the shape of the letter


cross."

capli,

that

High Priest was The early Christians loved

the form of a Saltire

to trace the type of the

symbol

of salva-

tion in everything in nature.


if

" See ye to it," exclaims Justin Martyr,

Type
Cross thing

of the
in in

there be aught in this world which without this form


its

EveryNature.

hath

orderlngs, or can minister to intercourse


, ,

between

man and man.


only

-^

S.

Ephraim abounds

examples.
bird

A
in

single
'

gem

we

giv'e

in conclusion: "
,

And

if

the

little

drew

S.

Barnabas, Catholic Epistle, Wake's Trans.

'

It is
viii.,

9. noteworthy that GiJeon himself was typified by the barley cake of which he dreamed.
13),
a.

(Jud.

and the barley cake was the


cross.

sacrificial

cake which

we have
'

seen (chap,

i.)

was

marked with
*

Paulinus, Efiist.,

i.

S.

Gregory, Morals on yob,

b. xxx,, c. 74.
lib. 6., c. 4;
iii.
,

dimensions of the ark.


see Bosio,
^

Stromatum,
Croce, lib.

also S.

Clemens Ale.\and. applies this type to the Chrysostom on S. Mark, Hotii. iv.

La Trionfante
above form.

cap. 2.

Abarbanel, quoted by Bosio,


in the

lib. iii.,

cap. 10.

The

unction in coronation in the present

day

is
*

Justin Martyr, Apol.

2.

Types of
its

the Cross
mystery of the Cross, the
mystery
air

6i

wings, and refused to use the

silly

wnuUl

then refuse her, and not bear her up; but her wings praise the Rood.
.VulI
if

a ship spreadeth her


of

s.iils

for the sea, in the


a

of the

Rood

and fnmi the \'oke

wood, she maketh


is

bosom

lor the

wind; when she


out for her
i)y

hath spread forth the Rood, then

the course spread

elearl_\-

voyage.

And

if

the ship was that of the Jew, the Cross rebuked him
it,

his deed, since

though not intending

in

the ship himself with his

o\\ n

hands, he hath spread and displayed the myster\- of the Rood.

The

sea

by the

Rood was subjected to the had made wood into the form of a
"
I

unbelievers; but unless the crucifiers


cross,

and upon
'

it

had hung the Hody

as a sail,

the voyage would have halted. "

believe," writes one of the worthiest scholars of this century, " that
all

a spiritualized eye, seeing our Lord, luu'ing before


it

the

human

race shut
in

up
it

in

the person of

always the figure

which

pleased Almighty
find a similar

God

to place

him before us on the Cross, might expect to


here and there
all

figure

the figure of the Crossplaced


human
it

over the work

of creation, as a religious spirit in better da\'s than the present erected

that Cross on high. whcre\er a


as the ancient Fathers detected

foot

might be arrested by

it;

and

in

the most hidden allusions of .Scrip-

ture

Moses
life

stretching out his hands to the Amalekites, his rod, the

branch which he threw into the bitter waters, the wood of the ark, the
tree of

in

every animal and material nature he would expect to disall

cern the figure of a cross; and he would not be surprised to find

mathematical figures were reducible to

this

clement,

or,
is

as

modern

anatomists have suggested, that the whole animal world


this

framed upon

type

central

column with

lateral

processes.

It

is

one of the

grand speculations of zoological science.""

APPENDIX
NOTE OX THE SVMHi )LIC.\L MEANING OF THE WORD ARK
" .\i.THo'
certain that

childish play nhich

nothing indeed can be more ridiculous and absurd tli.in the some jieople make with names and words, it is nevertheless
are
tliat

some names and words there


Rhvthum.
;

those things they are imposed upon, and


'

which are naturally expressive of there are certain powers of the

.';.

Ephr.iim,

xviii.

Cruc,\
'

lib. i.,

cap. 52

Lipsius, Di- Cruce,

See also Tertulli.in, Apology, chap, xx., xxx.; Gretscr, De lib. i., cap. x.; Bosio, La Trioiifank' Crou\ lib. iii.

Sevvell, C/trislian

Morals,

p.

323.

62
letters,

History of the Cross


and combinations
of those powers,

which bear some sort of signature and words are sometimes purely symbolical, and in some sense sacramental ; whereof instances, both in the Old and New Testament, are obvious enough. Of this nature is the name, THEBAH, which God was pleased to give to that structure which he commanded Noah to make, and that with all exactness, according to the pattern of it which was shewn him. Now this name is not originated from any other Hebrew word so far as we can find, but is in itself an original, and tlierefore also triliteral, as Notwithstanding which, since it the original words in that tongue generally are. is a sacred name, and God himself imposed it, though the origination of it may not be so plain to every vulgar eye, yet we may safely conclude that there could Something of which not but be some very good reason for the choice thereof. we may be able perhaps to glance at. But the deep ground of the imposition of this, or indeed of any other name given by God, we must not expect ever It consists, then, of these three letters, Thau, Beth, fully to penetrate into. and He ; all of which are here symbolical. " n, Thau, is the symbol of man and of the human nature which is the And Christ, who is perfection and end of all the creatures, says Choedamus. from the Greek alphabet called Alpha and Omega, is, according to the Hebrew, called Aleph and Thau, the first and the last, or God and man Th.\u being the perfection of the creation; and the abbreviation of Thuinmim. Whence the Syriac has translated it, / am Urim and Thummim. This Thau is also made a note of repentance yTheshubah\ and of the preservation which
of the things expressed, so that both letters
is

consequent of

it.

And

therefore, in the vision of Ezekiel,

God

is

repre-

that sigh,

men of and lament the publick sins and abominations. And this Thau, the mark of the angel of penitence, and of the soul's Theshubah, or return to God,
sented as
his angel to set a

commanding

Th.\u upon

the foreheads

the

several of the fathers


not.

make

to

be the sign of the Cross

how

truly I

determine

"

"Z,

Beth, signifies a house after the

manner

of which was built the

Ark ;

and

denotes the superior wisdom, or the house of wisdom wherein (say the Hebrew doctors) all things were ab origine disposed in their archetypes, before
it

they were yet brought forth into their proper form, or species; and by which Wisdom all things that are created, were created, and produced, according to
the Psalmist.
is

In

7C'/sdi>m
all

hast thou

made

all things, that

is,
i.

in the

Son, which
i.,

the beginning of

things as well as ihe, ending. Gen.

and John

or the

first

and the

last in the

alphabet of nature; as

This is the second symbol or literal by divine science in the very name of it And the third is " n, He, which is the letter that was afterwards given by God to Abraham, as here to Noah; concerning which the learned Jews observe that it is doubled in the great name of God, because in the frst He, God, formed and produced the world in his mind, and in the second he unfolded things into their several
nature.
;

indeed the whole book of characteristick of the ark, impressed


filling

kinds and proper specifick forms, but with this provision: that the beings explicated or manifested in the second production or creation, should in

Types of
similitude

the Cross
first,

and consonance imitate and emulate the


this
is

or the heavenly

originals themselves.

"

And

tlie

radical interpretation of the

name,

'I'hki'.ah, as
'

it
it

given by the wisdom of Ciod to the ark or vessel of Noah, namely,


to represent to him,
it

'I'hat

was was

and to his jjosterity, the perfec'tion of the human nature and the preservaiidu thereuf through the waters, even the waters of Baptism and Regeneration.' The comment of our learned commentator is rich in lore. It is with regret Room must be made for a line is omitted, especially as the work is very rare. one more observation: " That the one and the same word being read from the right to the left is Theh.xh, and from the left to the right is H.\-ueth, /. c, The House, which is as much as Beth-Ha-Kaih-sh, the Sanctuary, or the Church. Conformable to which was that constant primitive ajijilication, as we Bibliothcca Biblica, find in the holy fathers, of the .\rk to the Church."
such as
is

in Christ,

annotation

.\iv.

(to

Genesis

vii.).

CHAPTER

III

THE EARLY FORM AND USE OF THE CROSS


Section
i.

T/ic Cross

WtJuntary Crucifixion. Section Crucifixion of Children by the Jeics Section J.


of Pnnislnnciit.
2.

THE

cross

was

at first

a simple stake upon which the sufferer was


;

impaled, or to which he was fastened

in
is

time

it

became a gibbet

of various shapes.

The

original signification
skolops,

preserved in the Greek

Gravpos, stauros, and anokoip,


stake set in the ground.

both primaril}' signifying a sharp


of the instrument of death
is

The development

shown

in

the Latin names, crux, patibuluui, and furea.

The

cross

was

not recognized in the Mosaic Liw, hence the Jews had no


Original Cross.

word

to express

it,

but used a double term expressing con-

junction, the ivarp and icoof.'

Section

I.

The Cross
'

of Punishment.

The

cross

was used

in

an-

cient times as a
, Inventor ol the Cross.

punishment

for flagrant crimes in

Egypt, Assyria, Persia,


'

Palestine, Carthasje, Greece, o


jj.

'

and Rome; the explorers found i


in

j,^

Mcxico, and modern travellers

China, Japan, and

Madagascar.
cross to a

Tradition ascribes the invention of the punishment of the

woman, the Queen Semiramis, by whom, or by her husband Ninus, Farno, King of Media, with his wife and seven sons, were cruciAs it is uncertain when the celebrated Assyrian Queen lived, fied.'
'

Pe.irson on the Creed, art.

iv.

yet Lysons, tracing the origin of the word, says,

" Chrnsh
the word

tynp signifies boards or pieces of timber fastened together, as


is

we should

say. crosswise

so vised in

Exodus

xxvii

6.

This seems a very natural and probable etymon for the term,

but

it may also allude more to the agony suffered on such an erection, and then its origin perhaps may be traced to jnp, Chrutz, 'agitation.' This word also means to be 'kneaded' and broken in pieces like clay in the hands of a potter. Clirotshi in Chaldee, we are told by

means accusations, charges, revilings, reproach," all of them terms applied to our Lord in his sufferings. " Critic poiiittir pro omni angore, strictius pro morte in ligno." Pliny shows that the punishment of the cross among the Romans was as old as Tarquinius Priscus
Parkhurst,
;

how much

older,

it is

perhaps

difficult to say.

'^

Diodorus Siculus, Antiq.,

lib. ii., c.

I.

64

larly

Forms and Uses


is

65

it

may

be drnibtcd \\hcthci' she

ciititleil

to the unenviable credit of

dcvisiny the most agonizing death possible.

Josephus says

'

that Pha-

raoh's chief baker was crucified not hanged, as our English translation
reads,

and I'haraoh

nia_\'

have preceded Semiramis.

Among

notable instances of crucifixion, are those of the


H.c.

Queen
is

of

Scythia by Cyrus in the sixth century

Alexander the Great

said

Crucifixion by Impaling.

Crucifixion on .Stauros.

From

Lipsius' Di: Criice.

From

Lipsius'

Dc

Criue.

to have crucified two thousand Tyrians.


crates,

By the

cross perished PolyNotable


instances.

King

of

Samos.

This monarch had been uniformly


of his plans or wishes
at his

fortunate, never in

any

having been

even disappointed.
he resolved to
'

Becoming alarmed

uninterrupted happiness,

sacrifice his
b.
ii.,

most highly prized treasure, to avert unknown


Semiramis by some historians
cir.
li.c. is

Josephus, Aii/iq.,
;

c.

5.

supposed

to

have lived

B.C.

2CX
5

by others,

li.c.

1250.

I'haraoh

1720.

66
future
ills.

History of the Cross


Accordingly he threw into the sea
all

his signet ring

which he

valued above
after

else;

it

was swallowed by a
His

fish A\hich

was caught soon


at last.

and the ring restored to him.

e\il

fate

came

He

was conquered
Ariarathes,

by Orcetes,

commander

of

Darius,

and

crucified.

Leonidas, after death, was hung upon the cross by Xerxes, B.C. 480.

King

of Cappadocia, in his eighty-first year,

was flayed

alive,

and then
322.

crucified, together with his officers,

by order

of Perdiccas, B.C.

So, also, was Regulus at Carthage, B.C. 255.

Eight hundred Jews

were thus put to death, and the throats of their wives and children cut

by command, and
his wives

in

the presence of Alexander Jannaeus, while he and


zest.

partook of dinner heightened by this


];.C.

As
this

early as the time of Tarquin

600, the

Romans

singled out
cross

punishment
Exposed

as one of peculiar disgrace,

by exposing upon the

the corpses of those


Bodies of Suicides

who had committed

suicide to escape

imposed

labor.

The

Carthaginians, Egyptians, and Persians


of those

on the Cross.

treated in like
specially dishonored.'

manner the dead bodies

they held

The Jews deny


^
..

the crucifixion of persons alive, because their law re-

quired that executions should be accomplished, and the bodies buried


Crucifixion by
. .

that

same

day.'' -'

the Jews.

similar to a cross,

Yet Maimonides describes their o gibbet as and Lipsius supposes that thus suffered

the "

Heads

of the people " for the idolatry of Baalpeor,' the

King

of

Ai,* the five kings,

and the sons of Rizpah.'

But no nation has suffered

more severely by this mode of execution than the Jews, when the measure they had meted out was returned unto them. " His blood be upon us, and upon our children," was their imprecation, and it was fulfilled.
Varus
at

one time crucified two thousand of them

siege of Jerusalem, the

Romans

for sedition. At the " caught every day five hundred Jews,
. . .

nay sometimes they caught more


their multitude

and nailed them one after


crosses,

one way, and another after another, to the

by way

of jest,

when
and

was so great that room was wanting

for the crosses,

crosses wanting for the bodies."'

" So that they which had nothing


in their

but

'

crucify

'

in their

mouths, were therewith paid home

own

bodies, early suffering the reward of their imprecations, and properly


in

the same kind. "


'

'

Lipsius,

De

Ciuce,
'

lib. iii.,

cap. 12.
;

'

Deut.

xxi., 22, 23.

'

Num.

xxv., 4.

Josh,

viii., 29.

^ Josephus, Aittiq., Sam. xxi., 9. Browne, Vii/gay and Common E>-rors. b. v., c. 21.

Josh,

x., 2fi

b. xvii., c. 10.

Early Forms and Uses


Death hy the cross was the most ii^nominious that could be

67
inflicteci.

The Roman citizen was exempt from it; to the Jew, " cursed " was, "everyone that han<reth upon a tree"'; the Greek re, Ignominy 01
-'

01

'

garded

witli
"'

mingled contempt and pity the preacher who

the cross.

proclaimed

a disgracefid

unknown God death. One unacTlie

" to be one

who had submitted

to such

quaintetl with the tone of feehng

among Jews and

Gentiles at the

time of our Saviour's crucifixion


can form no conception of the

"scandal of the cross."

The
up

great obstacle to the building


of the Christian

Church was, that

" the " Headstone of the corner

was " a stone of stumbling and a


rock of offence."
^

The

force of

the Apostle's expression can be

very imperfectly
those
earl\-

estimated
not
read

by
the

who have

Christian documents.^

Among
some chance

the Jews there was


of

mercy and escape


Chance
of

from deatli offered


Ob-

tO the accused.

Ac-

taining witness
to Innocence.

cording to the Mishna, before

any one was punished


proclamation
Crucifixion by

for a capital crime,

was made before the prisoner by


the public
crier, that
if

One Hand and

Foot.

From

Bartholinus'

De

Criice C/iristi.

any one
he should appear before the judge and declare
that,

knew aught
it.

of his innocence,

And theGemaraof Babylon says,


made
'

"before the death of Jesus this

proclamation was
(.;al,
iii
,

for forty days, but

no defence could be found."


-1

'

13.

Pet.

ii.,

7, S.

of the Cltristian Church, First Three Centuries, p. 135. " From this circumstance the Heathen are fully convinced of our madness, for giving the second place after the immutalile and eternal God, and Father of all, to a person who was crucified." Justin
'

Blunt, //is/,

Martyr, Apology 2
^

see also Minutius Felix, pp. 57, 147, ed. Davis, Cantab, 1712.
liii.,

Lowth on
is

Isaiah

8.

On

the passage from the


falsities,

Gemara above mentioned, Lardner


Testi-

observes, " It

truly surprising to see such

contrary to well-known facts,"

68

History of the Cross

Now
trial

it is

plain,

from the history

of the four Evangelists, that in the

and condemnation of Jesus no such law was observed (though,


our

,. Denied to
^''''-

accordinsj to the account of the Mishna, o


in practice at that time):

'

it

must have been


for

no proclamation was made

any
our
it,

person to bear witness to the innocence and character of Jesus, nor did

any one voluntarily step

forth to give his attestation to

it.

And

Saviour seems to refer to such a custom, and to claim the benefit of

by

his

answer to the High


:

Priest,

when he asked him


;

of his disciples

and

of his doctrine

"

spake openly to the world

ever taught in the syna-

gogue and
have
I I

in

the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret

said nothing.

what
and

have said

them which heard me, unto them; behold, they know what I said" (John
?

Whj' askest thou me

ask

xviii. 20, 21).

This, therefore, was one remarkable instance of hardship

injustice,

among

others, predicted

by the prophet, which our Saviour

underwent

in his trial

and

sufferings.'

Previous to the execution, the sufferer was stripped of his clothing;

nor

is

it

probable that our Lord was spared this indignity.

Jeremy

Preliminaries to Execution.

Tavlor says, " For as soon


Paradisc
tliis
;

as

Adam

was clothed he quitted

Jesus was

made naked

that he might bring us in

again."'

In

state of nudity the scourging

was

inflicted.

This was

either with rods, or with whips of cords or leather, to which small bones

were sometimes fasteaed to increase the severity.


stripes

By

the Jewish law the


in case of

were limited to forty, and to lean to the side of mercy

a miscount, onlv thirtv-nine were inflicted, thirteen blows beinsf siven

with a scourge having three thongs.

There was no

limit in the

Roman

law, only a freeman could not be punished with a whip. tion

This exemp-

was not extended

to our Saviour; he received the chastisement of a


of the flagellation, that death frequent!)report
certainly false, but this false report

slave.

Such was the severity


vol.
1.,

jnoiiic'S,

p.

it)S.

Lowth proceeds: "The

is

is

founded on the supposition that there was such a custom, and so far confirms the account above given from the Mishna." The Mishna was composed in the middle of the second century,

according to Prideaux.
^

Lardner ascribes
S.

it

to the year of Christ, iSo.

Lowth, Ibid.:

'*

Paul likewise in similar circumstances, standing before the judgment


:

seems to complain of the same unjust treatment that no one was called, or would appear to vindicate his character. My manner of life from my youth, which was at the first
seat of Festus,
'

among mine own


if they would
xxvi., 4, 5.
^

nation at Jerusalem,

know

all

the

Jews

which knew
I

me

from the beginning,

testify, that after the

most

straitest sect of

our religion

lived a Pharisee.' "

Acts

Some Romish

writers

Jeremy Taylor, Life of Christ, part iii., sec. 15. have imagined an enormous number of stripes inflicted upon our
five

Lord.

S. Brigitta, in

her Revelations, savs

thousand, others more.

Earl)' rornis
aiitici|),ili.-(l

and Uses

69

the intfiulcd torture of the cross.


toiiLjLie

Soinethnes the victim was


reveal unpleas-

gagjred, or his

cut out, lest in his


his jutlge.

agony he might

ant secrets,

or revile

The

additional insults: the ironical


antl

crowning with thm-ns, the purple robe,

mocking homage

to

which

our Lord was subjecleil, were founded on no CListomary or legal usage,


but were merely the exhibition
ot"

malicious cruelt}', or the\-

may be

otherwise accountetl
Pilate,

tor.

It

has

been conjectured that

moved
.

either by the warnings of his wife,

or"

the

Possible Reasons for piute's in-

more

afraid

because Jesus " declared himself the son of

tended Mercy.

God,"

soLight to pacify the

Jews by scourging Jesus; and exhibiting


and so to purchase
if

Him, thus disgraced,

to riilicule,
15ut
b_\-

for our

Lord immu-

nity from further torture.

sucli feelings

moved

the stern

Roman
Aban-

governor, they were crushed

tin:

change

of attack

by the Jews.

doning their
sedition

first

charge of blasphemy, they accused our blessed Lord of


(for

ami treason

which crucifixion was the special punishment),

anci e.Kcited Pilate's fears.

"If thou

let this

man

go, thou art not Caesar's

friend: w!iosoe\'er

maketh himself

a king speakcth against Ca;sar " (S.

John
It

xix. 12).

was part

of the

condemnation
This

for the sufferer to bear his cross to

the place of execution.

ilepri\'ed

him

i:)f

the right of sanctuary, and


re-

added,

if

possible, to the dissjrace. "^


^

The

lowest term of

proach that a

Roman

could apply to another

was"

criicifcr,"

Cross Borne by "^^ victim.


.

" cross bearer."

" Sin laughed to see the king of heaven and earth, and the

great lover of souls, instead of the sceptre of his kingdim, to bear a tree
of cursing

and shame; but Piety wept tears of joy, when she should besit
'

hold that Cross, which loaded the shoulders of her Lord, afterward

upon
It

sceptres,

and be engraved and signed upon the forehead

of kings."

has been supposed that Jesus bore onl}- the transverse beam, \\hile
carried the rest of the cross, but
until
it is

Simon the Cyrenian,

generally prePortion of the cross Borne by our Lord.

sumed
under

that our
its

Lord sustained the whole,"


;

he sank
of the
in-

weight

as Isaac, his type, carried the

wood

mystical sacrifice.

No Jew

or

Roman
in

could touch the


is

strument of shame without defilement, so a passer-by


service,

pressed into the

betokening the gathering


are significant.

of the Gentiles,

The meaning
see albo S. ."^ug.

of

the
'

names

Cyrenian signifying" obedient," and Simon,


iii.,

S.

Jeremy Taylor, Life of Christ, part John xix., 17.


^

sec.

15.

Discourse

.xx.;

on

Chrysos. Horn, on S. fohn, 85

TertuUian, Contra yiid.:

S.

Ephraim,

ser. in

Abraham.

/o

History of the Cross


heir."

"an

"It was not a Jew," says

S.

Ambrose, "who

carried the

cross,

but a foreigner and wayfarer; neither did he precede, but follow,

according to the Scripture,

take up thy cross and follow me.


wood

"

'

Sometimes

a tablet studded with sharp nails

was fastened

to the

border of the garment of the condemned, and S. Cyprian af^rms, " that

u Goaded Heels r~ ^ with Nails.


,

,,

Christ did stick to the

that he carried, being galled o t

with the iron at his heels, and nailed even before his cruci-

fixion."

"

The
_.

place of execution was usually

by the roadside,

or on an eleva-

tion without the city,' that passers-by


Stupeylying
''"",
.

might take warning.

Wine medi-

cated with mvrrh was -^ given to the victim, to blunt the sensibility

by

partial stupefaction.

This our Lord refused,

in

order that His mind might be unclouded.

This benumbing potion

must not be confounded with the draught

offered to Jesus

when upon

the cross; that was a mi.Kture of sour wine and water called Posca, a

common
The

beverage

among

the

Roman

soldiers.

cross rarely

exceeded ten

feet in height,

although there

is

a tra-

dition that our Saviour's


feet long.'
Height
of Cross.
. ,

was

fifteen feet high,

and the transverse eight


, i

The
.,

sufferers

were not always fastened to the

cross witii nails, but were


this

sometimes bound with cords.


i

it

In

manner, according to tradition,

S.

Andrew was

crucified,

hence his

agony was protracted

for several days';

and the thieves are generally


Probably
in

represented in art as at least with their feet tied.


stance of our Lord, the prophecy of the Psalmist, "

the in-

They

pierced

my

hands and
feet
'

my

feet,"

was

literally fulfilled,

yet

some conjecture

that his

were only bound to the Cross."


S.
S.

Additional agony was sometimes


sec,

Ambrose,
Cyprian,

lib. x.

in

Lucan.
;

'

De

passione
ii.,

Taylor,

Life of Christ, part

iii.,

xv.

Discourse xx.

Lipsius,
*

De

Criice. lib.

cap. ii.

" Wherefore Jesus

also, that
xiii.,

he might sanctify the people with his

own

blood, suffered

without the gate."


*

Heb.

12.

8.7 inches.
tery
is

De Cruce, lib. i., cap. 7. Perhaps palms, not feet, are meant. A palm is The heiyht of the cross is generally much exaggerated by painters. In the mysattributed to S. Gregory Nazienzen a more correct idea is given, for the body of our Lord
Gretser.
' '

not raised above the reach of his Virgin Mother.

Per /tos tuos sacros pedes, quos osciilor Materno amore, te nunc, niisereal met."

'

This tradition

is

very ancient.

On

the old seal of the city of Rochester, England, probacir.

bly taken from that of a convent established


S. Peter

A.D. 600, the saint

is

thus represented.

Yet

and other writers specify it as a palm-tree. * Dr. Pauhis, followed by Rosenmiiller, Kuehnoel, and Frisrhe. It is admitted that Inndirig was common both as to the hands and feet when the former were nailed hence probably also
Chrysnlogos says he was crucified on a
tree,
;

Early Forms and L-ses


inflicted

71

by

exposing,' the crucified to the attacks of

wiUl beasts, or,

by

buiUlin^f a

fire

at the foot of the cross, the sufferer experienced the tor-

ture of buruint;- and suffocation, as in the case of I'ionius, a jiresbytcr of

Carthaye.

The bodies

of the victims

were

prcnerall)- left

upon

tlie

cross until

they decayed or were devoured by

wiiil

beasts and birds.

On

great oc-

casions, sucli as birthdays, etc., the

Roman

governors gave permission

that they niiglit be taken

down, but

out of respect to the law. already


alluded to, the Jews were allowed to

hasten the death of the crucified, so that by burial " that same day, the
land

be not defiled."

Hence the

legs of the fellow-sufferers with Jesus

were broken

yet so carefully did

God

preserve his prophecies, that not

only not even a bone of our Lord's

body was broken,


that pierced

either
side,

by the lance
or the nails
feet,

His

which wounded His hands and


but as the
tioners, not

Romans were
b}-

the execu-

even a hair of His head


the Jewish law

perished, although

that of malefactors was shorn.'

The
effect

cross

was generally erected


be ^ sjiven When
in

previous to the execution, that more


mitrht ^
the Victim

Cracitixion of S. Andrew.

to the

warning punish-

was Fastened
to the Cross.

From

Lipsius'

De

Criice.

ment.
of the

Fhus

the war

against the Jews, Lucilius Bassos having taken captive Eleazar the chief of the young Israelites, " set up a cross as if he were

Romans

just
vail

going to hang Eleazar upon

it

immediately

...

in

order to pre"

with them to surrender the city for the preservation of that man."'
latter.

were the

April, 173S, binding

xxiii., 27-34. According to a writer in Gentlemen was peculiar to the Romans. On the Iri-sh standard crosses, the represented as bound. Browne, Hydriotaphia or Urn-Burial, chap. i. ^Josephus, yewish War, b. ii., chap. vi.
'

Oldshausen on Luke

Mag.,

feet are

72

History of the Cross


nailed to the cross while
it

Sometimes the victim was


in

was

prostrate, as

the instance of the martyr Pionius.'


nails,
its

The

risk of the

body's being torn

from the
settled in

by

its

swaying, while the cross was being lifted up and

place,

was guarded against by the binding, and the projecwhich passing between the thighs supported the

tion in the upright post,

Crucifixion by Tying.

From

Lipsius'

De

Critce.

body.

Irena;us thus describes the cross:

"

The

structure of the cross


in

has five ends, or summits, two in lengtli, two in breadth, and one

the

middle on which the crucified person rests."

"

Justin Martyr says," that

which
"
is

is

fixed in the middle, to which they \\\\o are crucified are fas-

tened, stands up like a horn."'

Tertullian's description
is

is

very clear.

part,

and indeed the

principal part of the cross,

any post which


is

fixed in an upright position; but to us the entire cross


its

imputed

including
'

transverse beam, and the projecting bar which serves as


Crucc,
lib. ii.,

Lipsius,

De

cap.

7.

Irenseus, Opera, p. I&6.

'Justin Marlyr, Dialog, with Trypho, gi.

Early Forms and Uses


a seat."
rest
'

73
in

Ilcncc such plirascs as


etc.'^

frcc]iiciitl_\'

occur

nkl writers, " to

upon the sharp cross,"


manner.

The modern Japanese and


thi.:

inhabitants

of

Madagascar and the Soudan arc


In art
tiiis

said to construct tlicir crosses after

this

portion of

cross

is

ignored, and the suppid-

aiiiiiin,

or su])[)ort bencatli the feet,

is

substitutetl.

Neitlier from tlie simple narrative of the Evangelists, nor from tradi-

The

Crucified Exposed to

Wild

Beasts.

Crucifixion and Bnrning.

From
tion, can

Lipsius'

De

Critcc.

we
(S.

learn exactly

e.\cept that the

how our Saviour was fastened to the Cross, evidence demanded by, and offered to, the sceptical S.
xxi, 27)

Thomas

John

shows that

at least those

holy hands

had healed the

leper, blessed the babes, gi\-en food to

thousands

which were

riveted to the cross.

Guevara, Bishop of Mondonedo, chaplain to Charles


fanciful, supposititious
'

V. of Spain, gives a very curiously


'

account of the

TertuUian,

Ad A^ationes,

lib.

ii.

Cicero against Verres, v., 66.

74
Crucifixion.

History of the Cross

He presumes
so Clirist

tliat as

Adam

used

liis

liand in plucking tlie


to be nailed, the
left.

forbidden
Supposititious

fruit,

first

extended

his

hand

the hand of the heart, " because the heart of Christ should
?''>'
^'-"^
'^^'''-

chnst"s^
Crucifixion.

\\liicb

the heart of

Adam

did offend, and the

j^^^,^j

^f

Qhrist

should pay for that which the hand of

Adam

Then the cross was raised and rudely settled in the ground while the feet swung roughly against the cruel tree, lastly the feet, In Romish legends the left being placed over the other, were fastened.'
did steal."

we

read that to S. Bonaventure

it

was revealed that Jesus ascended a


Fra Angelico, Raphael, and others,

ladder to be affixed to the cross.

have adopted

this

method.

S.

Brigitta, in her visions, witnessed both

modes; hence some few painters have represented our Lord


the cross before
its

as supine

on

erection.

According to tradition our Lord's back was turned towards Jerusalem,

which was
Position of Christ on the Cross.

in the east,

and

his face

toward the west."

This

may have

been a refinement of cruelty on the part

of the executioners.

Jesus' back was placed toward the capital of the nation of

whom

the

Roman

governor had written he was " King,"

and

his face turned to the setting sun, not only to

remind him

of his

departing glory, as his enemies fondly deemed, but that no torture,

however petty, yet agonizing,


be spared.

as the blaze of the sun

would

be,

might

Yet Damascenus spiritualizes e\'en this. he says, " were turned toward the West, toward the

" Jesus' eyes,"

Roman

Church,

whither the chief of the apostles, SS. Peter and Paul, were to go."'

Our Saviour was


him worthy
mystery.

crucified with his face to the

West," says Bishop

Hall, " which, however spitefully meant of the Jews, as not allowing
to look on the holy city

and temple, yet was not without a

His eyes look to the Gentiles, saith the Psalmist; as Christ

therefore on his cross looked toward us sinners of the Gentiles, so let us

look towards him."


^

Mount of

Cal-jarie, pt. i., cliap. 31-33.


lib.

'

Bede,

in

Lucum,

cap. 93.

Damaseemis,

iv.,

caix 13.

The position of Jesus, averted from his city, may have been Roman centurion. When Verres seized Gavins in Sicily, about to embark for Konie, he stripped and scourged him in the market-place. The poor wretch uttered no cry but the oft repeated words " Civis Romanus sum" "as if," says Cicero, " those magic
^

Bishop Hall's Sermon xxxv.

intentional on the part of the

words had power


land that
called himself a

to save

him."

But

in vain.

Verres ordered a cross to be erected on a head-

commanded

a view of Italy across the strait, saying in savage mockery that as Gavius
citizen,

Roman

he might have the opportunity of looking toward his native land,

and there he was

crucified.

Early Forms and Uses


Thu
position of
tiic criicifiud

75
S. Peter,

was not invariably the same.


was executed with
his

at his request, according- to tratiition,

head down Position


.
.

wards, considering

it

too hi<di an honor for one


*=*

who had

of

the

denied his master to suffer

in

the same manner that he did.

crucified.

The

apostle was not alone in his


in

mode

of
in

martyrdom.
the

Many

saints,

espcciall\'

Ei;\-pt,

were put to death

same manner;' others

Crucitixion

Head Downwards.

From

ripsius'

De

Cruce.

suffered, like S.

Andrew, upon the

cross since

known

as the Saltire cross,

or the cross with one


short, the cross
'

arm and the


-

foot resting

upon the ground.'


,

In

was turned anv way that


-

infernal art could

.,,,,, Length of Life


on the Cross,

suggest to add to the torment.

In spite of the fearfid


lingered a long time.

agony on the

cross,

men sometimes
i.,

Doubtless

some instances
'

are exaggerated, yet others are too well authenticated to


p. 5S.
c.

Forsyth, Li/c of Cicero, vol.

Eusebius, Ecdes.
is

Hist., b.

viii,,

Lipsius,

De

Criice,

lib.

iii..

cap.

S.

Hemans

says this

a Parthian, not a

Koman mode.

The Builder, March

16,

1872, p. 210.

76
be doubted.

History of the Cross


From
Bosio

we

learn that the Apostle S.

Andrew

lived

two days on the


Amaterna,

cross,

preaching to the people.

Victor,

Bishop of

crucified with his

head downwards, also lived two days, which


lived.

was the usual time that crucified persons


on the tenth day.

Timotheus and Maura,


and nights, and expired

a married pair, are said to have lived nine days

This story

is

probably an exaggeration.

The Reverend

Alban Butler

relates, that Marceus and Marccllainus, " twin brothers, of

an illustrious family of

Rome, were
to

condemned

to be

bound

two pillars
day

with their feet nailed to the same.


In this posture they remained a

and a

nisjht,

and on the

followiner

day were stabbed with lances."


the year 297, by order of

In

Emperor
at

Maximian, seven Christians


sata were crucified.

Samotime

Hipparchus, an
a

old

man,

died

in

short

James, Romanus, and Lollianus expired the next day, being stabbed

by

the

soldiers

Philotheus, Habibus,
still

and Paragrus were taken down


living; Calliopius, a

youth of Pamafter
suffer-

plndia.

was executed
broken

ing the

most cruel tortures, being


on
the

scourged,

wheel,

and
with
fifth
Crucifixion with

partial]}'

burnt; he was crucified

his

head downward

on

the

day of Passion week, and exday

Arms and Legs

Spread.

From

Lipsius'

De

pired on the following, or preparation,

Cnice.

at the

same hour.
is

The

fortitude displayed under crucifixion

b_\-

Bomilcar

thus described

by the pagan

historian Justin: After a severe defeat of the Carthaginian

army by Agathocles, King

position to desert to the for which offence," says Justin, " he was nailed by the Carthaginians to a gibbet in the middle of

enemy, "

of Sicily, this African chief

had shown a

dis-

the forum, that the same place which had been the scene of his honor

Early Forms and Uses


might now witness
tlie
liis

//

[)Liiiisliiiicnt.

But

lU)niilcLir

bore

tlie

cruelty of

citizens wilii m.iLjn.ininiit)-,

and from

tlie heit^lit

of the cross, as

from

a tribunal, declaimed against the crimes, etc. a loud voice

Having thus spoken with


he expired." be buiicd
if

amid an immense concourse

of the people,

]5esidcs the law already referred to, requiring the bodies to

before sundown, there was also a superstiliun

among

the Jews, that


No Rest
,
.

the corpse was


'

left

upon
1

tlie cross,
'

the departed soid '

knew
its

in

the

no peace, but wandered


'

in

unrest until the interment of

Grave unless
Buried.

former tenement.
in their

Tiie

Jews did not pray,

at least publicly

synagogues, for those

who were
in

crucified, nor

would

victims not Prayed for.

the)- allow their

bodies to be jjlaced

the family tombs, until the flesh

had decayed
special

in

the public cemeteries.


is

mention

made

that Joseph of Arimathea,


it

Hence we can understand why moved by the Holy


in his

Ghost, " begged the body of Jesus " to place

own

sepulchre.
it

The
filled

act

was so contrary

to that

customary
the rich "

in

his

own
9)

nation, that

was noted by the E\-angelists and thus not only was the prophec}-

" He made His grave


and the
a doubt.

ful-

\\ith

(Isa.

liii.,

but the iden-

tity of the bod_\-,

reality of his Resurrection,

were established

beyond

After the death of the \ictim, the cross was buried with him. Adam Clarke says in his commentary on Isa. xiw, 19: " But thou art cast out
of thy grave like an

abominable branch, and as the raiment


Cross Buried with the
Sufferer,
/
1

of those that are slain, thrust through with a sword, that go

down
1

to the stones of the pit; as a carcase trodden

under
;

feet."
tree
S.
is,

That

is,

as an object of abomination
a malefactor has
13).

and detestation
"
It is

such as the

on which
iii.,

been hanged.

written," saith

Paul (Gal.

"

"

Cursed

is

every one that hangeth on a tree

(from Deut.

x.xi., 23).

The Jews,

therefore, held also as accursed

and

pol-

luted the tree

itself

on which a malefactor had been executed, or on which

he had been hanged after having been put to death by stoning.


Dr. Clarke quotes from
:

And

Maimonides and Kalinski " The Jews never hang


is

any malefactor upon

a tree that
it

growing

in

the earth, but upon a post


said,
'

fixed in the ground, that

might never be
for

that

is

the tree on

which such an one was hanged;'

custom required that the tree


In like manner,
b\-

should be buried with the malefactor.

the stone by

which a criminal was stoned to death, or the sword

which he was be-

headed, or the napkin or handkerchief by which he was strangled, should

78 be buried with him


in

History of the Cross


the same grave.

For

as the

hanged man was con-

sidered the greatest abomination, so the very post or

wood on which
tlie dis-

he was hanged was deemed a most abominable thing, and therefore


buried under the earth."
'

Tiie value of these testimonies to

posal of the instruments of death, will be seen when we come to examine

the evidence for the discovery of the true Cross.

The
flicted,

sufferings

endured by a person, on

whom

this

punishment

is

in-

arc narrated

by Georg Gottlob Richter, a Get man physician,

in a Dissertation

on the Saviour's Crucifixion:''

"

I.

The

position of the

body
in

is

unnatural, the arms being extended

back and almost immovable.


painful sensation
is

In case of the least motion an extremely the hands and feet, which are pierced
is

experienced

with "

nails,
II.

and

in

the back, which

lacerated with stripes.


feet,

The

nails,

being driven through the parts of the hands and

which abound
" III.

in nerves

and tendons, create the most exquisite anguish.


of so

The exposure

inflammation,
suffering.

which every

many wounds to the open air brings on an moment increases the poignancy of the

" IV. In those parts of the body which are distended or pressed,

more blood
veins.

flows through the arteries than can be carried back in the


is,

The consequence

that a greater quantity of blood finds its

way from

the aorta into the head and stomach than would be carried

there by a natural and undisturbed circulation.

The

blood-vessels of the

head become pressed and swollen, which


ness of the face.

of course causes pain

and a red-

The circumstance

of the blood being impelled in


is

more

than ordinary quantities into the stomach


cause
it is

an unfavorable one also, be-

that part of the system which not only admits of the blood
is

being stationary but

peculiarly exposed to mortification.


in

The

aorta,

not being at liberty to empty


merly, the blood which
it

the free and undisturbed way, as foris

receives from the left ventricle of the heart,

unable to receive
is

its

usual quantity.
circulatiiMi.

The blood

of the lungs, therefore,


its

unable to find a free

This general obstruction extends

effects likewise to the right ventricle,


'

and the consequence


Jew
in

is

an internal
The execuThe Jews took

Hone

gives a curious account of the execution of a

London

in 1821.

tioner, at the request of his friends, did not touch his body, not

even his toes.


this

down

the corpse

and buried
at his

it,

the rope with which his hands were tied, and everything they
it

could obtain, used

execution (as
p.

seems from the narrative), and


-

according to their
et seq.

law, before sundown.

Year Bool;,

13S3.

See work, p. 36

Early Forms and Uses


excitement, and exertion, and anxict\- wliich
the an<jiiish of death
itself.
.ire

79
intolerable than
all

more

All the large vessels about the heart, and

the veins and arteries in that part of the system, on account of the

accumulation and pressure of


misery.
" V.

blootl,

are the source

of inexpressible

The degree

of anguish

is

gradual

in its
till

increase,
thiril,

and the person and sometimes

crvicified is able to li\e


till

under

it,

couiinonly

the

the seventh day."

As we would be

glad to

relie\-e

(iod's once chosen people from

any

of

the crime and shame of rejecting their Saviour, so


.tiT',
\\

we catch

at

even such

a straw as the following tradition given by Southey:

T^ii ir ,iT\T i_\i hen Toledo was recovered from the Moors by Alonzo
by Nebuchadnezzar
into Spain,

au of the jews not Guilty of the


^^^^^ ^^ ^^_.
''"'-

VI., the Jews assured him that they were descendants from
part of the ten tribes sent

and that when

Caiaphas the Migh Priest wrote to their ancestors, they objected to the
death of Jesus of Nazareth, asserting that the prophecies appeared to be
fulfilled in that just

person.
'

This answer

is

said to be preserved in the

archives of Toledo."

Section
sons,

2.

Voluntary Crucifixion.

Instances have occurred of pera

who, being influenced by fanatical enthusiasm, have voluntarily


fearful torture of crucifixion.
girls, pujiils
in

undergone the

In 1756, at Paris, two

Roman

Catholic sisterhood,

suffered crucifixion for the profane purpose of exhibiting a lively


of the Saviour's Passion.

image
hands

Each was nailed


in

to a cross, through the

and

feet,

and continued

that position for

more than three hours.

After the nails

were drawn, and the wounds

dressed, the sisters sat

down

to a repast, pretending that the operation

had been attended with no

pain, and that on the contrary they had exi)erienced exquisite pleasure.

They
nails,
'

liad indeed,

by wonderful self-command, suppressed


;

all

audible

in-

dications of anguish

but their agony, specially at the drawing of the

was shown by writhing, and other unequivocal demonstrations.

Jews.

Southey also quotes a Jewish authority, who states tliat there are three different races of " Oue, who took counsel for the death of Jesus of Nazareth these are in continual motion. The second, who urged on his sufferings these never can look any man in the face The third were the descendants of David, and with difficulty can raise their eyes to Heaven.
: :

who

strove to prevent the death of Christ, and shut themselves in the temple that they might not
it
:

witness

these are affable,

good men, who love

their neighbors

and can look anywhere."

Don

f!oi/t-riik, p.

iSl, ed. 1816.

8o

History of the Cross


In a second exhibition by the sisterhood, two of their number,

Fanny

and Mary, were the insane victims.


heroism.

Fanny

suffered with the greatest

She remained upon the


in

cross for three hours,

and was shifted

duriny that time


lacking
in less
in faith,

a great variety of positions.

But Mary,

who was
and

or fortitude, shuddered at the fastening of the nails,


relief.

than an hour shouted for

She was accordingly taken from

the cross and carried out of the chamber in a state of insensibility.

These instances may


Paris,

liave

been among the followers of the Abbt^

examples.
crucified

commonly known as One of them.


/Kr/;/;'-i^'

Convii/sionarics.

These

fanatics afford other

Sister Felicite, declared that she

had been

times

Probably an exaggeration.

Five others of

the same sect are mentioned, one of


times.

whom

suffered twice, another three

They remained upon

the crosses for different periods, varying


}-et

from half an hour to nearh- four hours,


they uttered no
cries, lost

but

little

blood,

and

all

speedily recovered.
late as

As
in

1787, a girl

was

crucified in

the parish church of Fareins, near Trevoux, the diocese of Lyons.

As may be

con-

jectured.

Good Friday was


is

the day profaned

by

this exliibition.'

There

also a very curious instance of

a self-inflicted crucifixion.
seif-criicifixion.

Matthew Lovat
in

was a shocmakcr

Venice.

Matthew Lovat.

Qn September
wood

21, 1803,

having

made

a cross of the

of his bedstead,
it

he attempted to fasten himself to


street called the Cross of Biri, but

in

the

was pre-

vented as he was about to drive the nail


into his left foot.
Self-Crucifixion of

Three years

after this,

he

Matthew Lovat.

made

a second attempt which was

more

suc-

cessful.

Having prepared a
girdle about his loins.
self

cross,

he stripped himself naked except for a

Fearing that he would not be able to attach him-

securely to the cross, he covered the lower part with a net, extending

from the suppcdancuin to the transverse.


'

Having introduced himself

Neale, Hist, of

tlu-

Janscnists, p. 58.

I^arly Foniis
into this, he next drove
stril'iing
it

and Uses
the
jialni

8i'

;i

n;iil

thioLiL;h

of his ritjht luind

by

on

tlie floor until

the [loint appeared on the outside.


feet,

He

then

drove a

nail

through both

fastening

them

to the

wood.

Tying

himself around the waist to the cross, he next


side with a knife,

people recjuired the

wounded himself in the lie was }-et in the room: to show himself to the exercise of much fortitude and resolution. The foot
diew himself
the lower
floor, until

of the cross having- been placed u])on the w intlow-sill, he

forward by means of his fingers pressing on the


end, overbahanciiig the
rest,

the cross
it.

fell

outside of the house and

hung
the

by ropes previously
already pierced
nail throuL^h the
Ij)'

fixed to sustain

He

then fastened the right hand,


dri\'iiig

the

nail,

to

its

proper place, but after


to affix
it.

left

hand he was unable

This took place at

eight o'clock in the morning.

As soon
his

as he

was seen he was taken down


cured.'

and carried
Section

to the hospital

where

wounds were completely

3.

Crucifixion of Children by the Jews.


of crucifying

The

Jews have

been accused

young
of

children upon

Good
in

Friday, in derision
loss of

of the solemn event then


their [prosperity.

commemorated, and

revenge for the

The names

some

of their \ictims ha\-e

been pre-

served

in

the Hagiology of the

Roman Church:

SS. William of Nor-

wich, said to have suffered in 1137; Richard of Pontoise, in 1182;


of Lincoln, in 1255,' for

Hugh
Simon

whose death eighteen Jews were hanged


child
in

of Trent, in

1473.

Norwich,

in

1235,

was stolen by the


thousand marks.
fift}-

Israelites, circumcised,

and

his crucifi.xion attem[5ted; but the offenders


fine of
fift\-

were discovered and compelled to pay a

Another

child was crucified in

Northampton,

for

whom

Jews were

drawn
S.

at horses' tails

and hanged.
is

Hugh

of Lincoln

the most celebrated of these j'outhful martyrs.

Matthew
saint.

Paris gives a detailed account of the tortures inflicted on this fed ten days with milk, then, the

He was

Jews being
Hugh
of Lincoln.

assembled, each mdividual stabbed hun with a knife; he

was forced to drink


fied,
'

esel,

was mocked
in

as Jesus, the false prophet, cruci-

and, finally, pierced


For a
full

the side with a lance.

The body was thrown


of Matthew

account, see Cesare Ruggiere, M.D., Xarrative of the Crucifixion


vol.
iii.,

Lovat,

Pamphleteer,

pp.

361-376;

Winslow, Anatomy of Suicide, pp. 329-337;

of Christ, pp. 372-375. About 1254, Alexander IV. being Pope, seventy-one Jews were imprisoned on charge of crucifying a boy, of which fact twenty-five knights made oath. Oxford Tables of Chronology.
'
^

Stroud, Physical Causes of the Death

F. C. H., Azotes
6

and

Queries, 2d ser., vol.

viii., p.

261.

82
into a well where
it

History of the Cross


was found by a miracle.

One

of the

Jews being

arrested, confessed that his nation did so every year.'

A
1779.

statue of freestone, twenty inches high, of S.

Hugh

existed until

This had been removed from his tomb and was found behind the

high altar of the Cathedral of Lincoln."


the Prioress's
talc.

Chaucer immortalizes him

in

" O, yonge

Hew

of Lincoln slain also

With cursed Jews, as it is notable, For it is but a litel while ago, Pray eke for us, we sinful folk unstable, That of his mercy God so merciable.

On

us his grete mercie niultiplie.


his

For reverence of
In art S.

moder Marie."

Hugh

is

represented as a child about three years old, nailed

upon
other.
fied,

a cross, or standing with a


S.

palm

in

one hand and a cross

in

the

Simon

of Trent, as a child with a cross

by

his side, or cruci-

with a

man

cutting his breast;


in

or, as in

a picture attributed to
in

Agostino Caracci, holding a palm


bodkin with which
child crucified, or
left side;

one hand,
S.

the other the long

his side

was pierced. two

William of Norwich, as a
nails, a knife in

crowned with thorns, holding two

his

or as a child

bound

to

posts, but

one foot nailed, the Jews


in

mocking him and one stabbing


bowl or three
;

his left side

and catching the blood


in his left
;

nails in his

hand and a hammer


of

or with the cross


in his

in his right

hand and three

nails in his left, the

wounds

hands

and

feet bleeding.

These instances

martyrdom have been generally

believed to have occurred, but Mrs. Jameson speaks of

them

as " real or

imaginary," and Southey strongly protests against their being authentic'


Matthew Paris, pp. 912-913 Ciii/. Mag., 1795, p. 372. Arc/hrologia, vol. i., p. 26. ^Jameson, Ltgcnds of Monastic Orders, 2d ed., p. 137. Southey says: " During those ages when the Jews were objects of popular hatred throughout Cliristendom, and when the sliglitest excitement sufficed for setting the rabble loose to butcher them and sack their houses, a
'
;
'^

common

pretext for such atrocities

sulted a crucifix, or profaned a consecrated wafer,

been discovered by a miracle.


torture, after

had crucified a Christian child, or inand that the murder, or the sacrilege, had confession of the imputed crime was forced from the parties by
to assert that they

was

which they were put to the cruellest death that exasperated bigotry could devise. I beThe supposed victim was then made a popular saint. Such instances lieve have occurred in every country where the papal power has been acknowledged, to the re. . .

...

proach of

all.

Regardless alike of probability and humanity, the local ecclesiastical


Letters

authorities entertained these charges, inconsistent as they were, contented with such proof as

could be wrung from flesh and bltiod by the extremity of torture."


dicating the Church of Kngland, p. 414.

to

Chas. Butler, vin-

CHAPTER

IV
CRCJSS

THE LEGENDS OF THE


Section
i.

Its

Fabled Antiquity.
the Cross.

Section

2.

I'raditions

Rcspecti)ig the

Wood of

Section j.

The

Miraeiiious A/'peoi ranees of

the Cross

THE germ Apocryphal


dovetail

of the so-called

Legend

of the Cross
it

is

found

in

the

gospel of Nicodemus, but

has been developed so


ideas,
it is difificult

that, while the different versions agree in the

main

to

these

details

so

that a

connected story can be presented."


it is

Omitting some minor


Section
longed to
i.

particulars,

as follows:

Its

Fabled Antiquity.

Adam

was weary of

life,

and

die.

Calling his son Seth, he bade him "

Go

to the gates of
Mission of Seln
for the

Eden
send

and ask S. Alichael,

who guards ^

the Tree of Life, to

me some
I

of the oil of

merc\- whicli

God promised
Seth replied,

on

of

Mercy.

me when
" Father,

he thrust

me

out of Paradise."
I

am

ready, but

know

not the way. "

" Go,"
is

commanded

Adam,
and
since

" by that valley which lieth Eastward; there


find

a green path

along which you will


tiiose

blackened
in

footprints,

for

where no

my
grass

feet

of

your mother trod

leaving the garden

has

grown."
Seth approached the gates of Eden he found them guarded by
and a curious
14S3.
heyliglie Cruys, printed
;

When
'

The

principal authorities are the Aurc-a Le;^enda of Jacobus de Voragiue,

Of the known to exist one in the Royal Library at Brussels, one in the colM. Berjeau lection of Mr. Schinkel at The Hague, and another in the library of Lord Spencer. has translated and reproduced in fac-simile the last, with additions from a French MS. of the The legend is also found in the Vita Christa, thirteenth century which is in the British Museum.
Dutch bh)ck-book, Geschiedcnis van het
latter only three copies are

by

J.

Veldener

in

printed at Troves in 1577, and in the Catalogus Sanctorum of Peter de Notalibus. condensed and given in a modern dress in Lord Lindsay's Christian Art, Mrs.

It

has been

Lady Eastlake's Histoy of Our Lord, and

S.

Baring-Gould's Curious Mytlis of tlic


83

Jameson and Middle A:,'i-s.

84
an angel
a
in

History of the Cross


whose hands was
a

sword of hving

fire,

but he was permitted


Setli

ghmpse

of the Paradise lost

by

his father's transgression.

beheld

a crystal fountain
rolled in four

whose sands were


rivers.

of silver, through

which the water

mighty
fruit

Before the fountain was a gigantic tree,

but bare of

and

foliage;

around

its

trunk a terrible serpent had Be-

writhed himself and had burned the bark and devoured the leaves.

neath the tree was an awful precipice, for


roots
its

reached to the

depths of Hell.
onl_\-

The

human

inhabitant

tlicre

was Cain, who

strove to climb the tree


to

re-enter

Paradise,
if

but the roots, as


stinct with
life,

in-

twined

around and entangled the murderer,


penetrating his

even
flesh.

Appalled, Seth raised


his

eyes

to

implore

mercy, and gazed at

Adam

Sends Seth

fo Paradise for

Some

of the Oil of Mercy.

From

the top
Its

of

the tree.

Veldener's The Legendary History of the Cross.

head reached unto


fruit,

Heaven, and

its

branches were covered with foliage, flowers, and


of
all,

and what was most beautiful


glorious and loveh* than the
'

little

babe was listening to the

songs of seven white doves circling

around him, and a


in

woman more

moon

bore the child

her arms.'
not to be found in the

The above passage

is

given from S. Baring-Gould's Myths.


:

It is

authorities to which the writer has access

" In an Apocryphal MS. entitled The Book of the Prophet Moses, in the possession of the is recorded the following conversation between God and Adam after the Fall Tlien I called him, saying, Oh Adam thou hast transgressed my command lift up

Hon. Robert Curzon,


' :

thine eyes.

Then
I

said unto him,

What

seest thou

He

said,

see a tree standing above

my

head.

"

'

Then

"
vol.
i.,

'

He said. Oh
p. io8.

answered him. and said unto him Thou hast spoken truth. Lord this tree above my head is like a cross.' " Jameson, Hist, of Our Lord,
!

In an ancient commentary on

S.

Matthew, the

star

which ajipeared

to the

Wise Men had


p. 211.

the form of a radiant child bearing a cross.

Jameson,

Legends of the Madonna,

Legends of
The angel
him
th.it
it

the Cross
Seth the
oil

85
of nieic\-, telling

at the gate refused to give

ctmkl not be bestowed uixni


in

man

until

five

thousand

five

hundred years had elapsed, but,

token of future pardon, he gave him

three seeds from the Tree of Life,' and

commanded him
first

to bury

them

with his father.

So Seth returned.

When Adam

heard the message of


time since his

the angel he became merry, and laughed for the


transgression, and said
:

"

God,

have lived

long enough.
soul from

Take

me."

my Adam

died the third tlay after

Seth"s return, ami his

sons buried him

in

the

Valley of Hebron.'

The

three seeds prosaplings,


^ . Product
t of

duced three

which marVellously be-

the Seeds.

came
their

one, yet ]ireser\'ed


distinct
s

J^

natures.
s

This
found,

>

n g AI o s e

and plucked
it

it

as his rod';

was

this
Archanfjel Michael Ciives Seth Three Seeds of
tlie

thlt sweetened the bit- The


ter waters of

Tree of

Life.

From

Veldener's Tlu- Lfgciitlary History of the Cross.

Marah, and
not calling upon

drew

forth water from the rock in the wilderness.


in

punished for his presumption


'

As the Prophet was God when he smote

" Kut the .\ungeile seyd to him that he is the Tree of Knowledge. Oyle of mercy. But he toke him three greynes of the same Tree that his fadre ete the appulle off, and bad him, als sone as his fadre was ded, that he sholde putte theise three Greynes undre his tonge, and grave him so Voiagf and Travaile of Sir and he dide."

The

usual reading
of the

myghte not have

foliit Mauiiiievil/e, p. 13.

bidding him plant

it

-Legeiula
*

The angel gave Seth a branch of the tree whereof Adam had eaten, on Mount Lebanon, and that when it bore fruit his father should be healed.
the bones of

A urea.
Adam, was preserved
in
tlie

relics

The tree, with among his sons.


from
this
It

ark by Noah,
it

who

divided the
of

The

skull fell to the share of

Shem, who buried

in a

mount

Judea

called

circumstance Calvary and Golgotha.


at

The

tree

Noah

himself planted on

Mount

Lebanon.
Eternity.
^

was

once palm, cypress, and cedar.


i.,

Tentzelius' A'umial
tiifferent story of

Treatise, quoted in

Southey's Omiiiana, vol.

p. 2S1.

The woods here

are evidently typical of Victory, Death, and

See chap,

ii.,

" Types of the Cross," for a somewhat

Moses' rod.

86

History of the Cross

the rock the second time, he was not permitted to carry the rod into the

Promised Land, so he

planted

it

in

Moab.

David, being

moved by
to

an angelic vision
transplant
it

to Jerusait

lem, sought

for three

days before he found


David Finds
the Tree.
't-

^U
tO

his

way
were

the

Holy City
acles

divers mir-

wrought

the
a

sick

were healed,
cleansed,

leper

and

three black
Seth Hiincs

men made
touch.

Three Seeds of the 1 ree of Life under his Tongue. Fruni \'eklener's T/u- Legendary History of the Cross.
I'uts the

Adam and

white by

its

The
it

monarch planted

in

that part of his garden


it

to which he resorted for private devotion,

and under

bewailed his

grievous sins
begirt
it

he also
thirty

with

rings of sapphire,
built a wall

and
it.

around
the

In

time,

tree

became

gigantic,

and

Solomon
Solomon Uses
it.

desired to

use

it

as a

column
but, cut

in the
it

Temple;

as

they might, the work-

men found that the beam miraculously became either too long
or too short for their

purpose.

In

anger
aside.

it

was thrown

A
From

Tlie

Three Seeds Spring

L'p.

woman, named

Sibylla,

Veldener's Tlie Legendary History of the Cross.

Legends of
sat

the Cross
tiro,

87
and she prophcsicil

upon

it

to rest; siuUlciily her clothes took

that Christ should liaiig

upon that beam, whereupon the Jews beat her

to death, and then threw the


it

beam

as a foot-bridge across a stream that


H.dkis, the Ouecn ~
Visit and Prophecy of Queen of Sheba.

mitrht be trampled under foot.

When
slie,

of

Sheba,' visited

King Solomon,
off

prophetically disit,

cerning Us future destmation, retused to walk o\er

but,

worshipping
declared to

it,

took

her sandals and forded the stream.

And
of

she

Solomon

that

upon that holy wood the Saviour


gold, and jewels,

Adam
it

and
tile

his posterity

would

suffer.

Thereupon the King commanded that


sil\-er,

beam

sh<iuld be overlaid with

and placed

over the

door of

tiie

Temple, which faced the


rising sun.

His grandcoNX'ting

son,

Abijah,
treasure,

the

stripped

the

adorn- Abijan Kobs and ,,..., ,,


conceals the Sacred Beam.

mentsfrom
the
wo()i.l,

and, toconceal the theft,

buried the

beam

in

the

ground. Aspringwelled
forth

from the place,


in after

which

times was

known
gel, to

as the

Pool of

Bethesda, and the an-

whom
wood,

was com1

mitted the care of the


sacred
at

lie

L rucilixinn.
Cross.

times

From

Velclener's

The Legendary History of the


its

" troubled the water," and the tree, giving forth

virtue, healed the sick.

At the time
surface,
e

of the crucifixion of our Lord, the


it

wood
\

floated to the
Reveals
itseif

and from
of
r

the Cross was formed in which were u


\
.

four species

wood, yet made


^

of

^\ one ^ tree: the palm,

when Needed
forchrisfs
sacrifice.

cypress, cedar,

and

olive.

When
Spirit
'

S.

Helena, the mother of Constantine, visited Jerusalem, the

having infused into her the wish to discover the Cross of our Lord,
calls

Bruce

her Maqueda.

The kings

of Abyssinia
'i3.\e,

have always claimed

to

be the lineal
note; Bruce,

descendants of .Solomon and the Queen of Sheba.


Travels, vol.
ii.,

Koran,

vol.

ii.,

p. 174,

p. 165.

88

History of the Cross


much among themselves what this assembling could mean. One of them, named Judas, said: " I know that she wishes to learn where is the wood of the Cross upon which
-'

she called together the wise men, and elders of the Jews, who,
fearing, sought anxiously
S.
, Helena
,
,

Mission.

Jesus was crucified, but beware


shall

lest

ye reveal

it,

for as

soon as that Cross


this

be found, our

Law

will

be done away.

have learned
of

from

my

forefathers,

one of whom, Zaccheus, was the father

Stephen."

That

was the protomartyr.

Rut the Jews declared that they had never heard

these things before, and agreed on no account to reveal where was the

wood

of the Cross.

Rut when they were brought to the Empress, they


were
terrified

by her
fire,

threats of death by

and pointed out Judas


as a just

man, and the

son of a prophet,

who
law
old

was
and

skilled in their
tr;iditions.

The

man
S.

being

obdurate,

Helena commanded
to be cast into a
to

him
]>it

starve

until

he

disclosed the truth.

He

endured the agonies of

hunger for

si.x

days; on

#, ^ ^.jV^^^e
\V,\

tisa^aw-

# AJ^^
,

B^ ""^i/

"

the seventh
yielded,

day he
led

and
to

the

Empress
The Jews Bury
the Crosses.

Calvary.

From

Veldener's T/n- Legendary History of the Cross.

Upon
in

the sacred

mount
when

was a temple of Venus,


which Satan had subtilely caused Hadrian to build
the Christians

order that

came

to that spot to worship they

might be charged with

adoring the Paphian goddess.

Judas having prayed, the earth trembled,


S.

and a fragrant odor was diffused.


temple to be demolished and
its

Helena commanded the pagan


and
at the

foundation ploughed up.

Then Judas began

to dig vigorously,

depth of twenty

feet

he found three crosses.

Rut a new

difficulty arose, for

they could not

distinguish the Cross of Christ from that of the thieves.

And

about the

90

History of the Cross


man was
carried by,

ninth hour a certain dead

and Judas stopped the bier

and

laid tlie first

and the second cross upon the dead man, but he moved
the third Cross upon him, and imlife.

Discovery of the Cross and subsequsnt Miracles.

Then thev laid mediately he came to


not.
first

certain

woman

also, of the

rank

in

the city, was lying half dead, to


first

whom

Macarius,

the Bishop of Jerusalem, applied the

and second

crosses, but

they

profited nothing; but the third being laid

upon

her, she rose

up whole.
Judas
that
I
I

But the devil


gained

^vas

vexed, and cried in anguish, "

By

the

first

many

souls,

but by the second Judas

have

lost

all

gained "; he also threatened him with torments and persecution, which

came

to pass under the reign of Julian the Apostate.

For Judas was

converted by these miracles, and was baptized, his name being changed
to Quiriacus,

and, after the death of Macarius, he became Bishop of

Jerusalem.
S.

Helena desired
appeared of^f^
,

also the nails

by which our Lord was fastened


gold; being fc>'&

to

the Cross, and Bishop Quiriacus having prayed, the nails immediately
^. Discovery
the Nails.

ground, glittering upon the ^ o


1

t>

like

de-

livered

to the
in

Empress, she reverently adored them, and


the crown, or helmet, of her son Constantine;
or placed

caused one to be placed

bridle of his war-horse, " In that day shall be upon the in verification of the prophet's words, bells [margin bridles] of the horses, Holiness to the Lord " (Zech. xiv.,
bit,

another was forged as a

upon the

20);

and the third she reserved

for herself; but,


it

being

in a

dangerous
time

storm on the Adriatic, she threw

into the sea,

which

until that
nail,

had been a whirlpool.


placed
in

Some

say there was a fourth

which was

the statue of Constantine 'hich overlooked the city of


of the

Rome.
and the
she ap-

The Cross

Lord she divided; part she sent


and
left at

to her son,

rest she enclosed in a silver shrine

Jerusalem.

And

pointed the Feast of the Invention of the Holy Cross to be solemnly


celebrated every year.

And
Cross
in
.

in

the course of

many

seasons, as time flowed on, the

Lord

per-

mitting his people to be scourged for their sins, Chosroes, King of the
Posses-

Persians,

'

subdued

all

the kingdoms t^

of

the East to his

sion of Chosroes.

clominiou.

But, comiiigto Jerusalem, he fled terrified from

the sepulchre of the Lord, yet carried

Cross

left

there by S.

Helena.

away the portion Wishing to be adored


silver,

of the Lord's
as a god,

he

caused to be constructed a tower of gold,

and precious stones,

9-

History of the Cross


stars.

and placed therein images of the sun, moon, and


duits artificial rain
fell,

By

slender conin a

and chariots drawn with a great noise

subter-

ranean passage shook the tower and imitated thunder.

And

giving up

the kingdom to his son Chosroes, he enthroned himself in the tower as the Father, and put the Cross upon his right in place of the Son, and a

cock

for

the Holy Spirit.'


the

Then

Emperor

Heraclius, being roused from his natural indol-

ence by this blasphemous impiet}-, came with a mighty army against the
Rescue of the
Cross by
Heraclius.

son of Chosroes to recover the hol\' Cross.

And

they met
fight

by

tli'j

rivcr

Danube, and the two princes agreed to

in single

combat upon the bridge, and that he who should


Heraclius,

remain victor should dispose of the arm\- of the other.

com-

mending himsjlf
came

to

God and

the holy Cross, after a severe conflict, overto

his antagonist,

who, refusing

be baptized, was
if

slain.

"

And

immediately the \\hole army of the Persians, as


yielded
itself to

by divine impulse,

the Christian faith and received holy Baptism."

Heraclius offered to Chosroes, as he had revered the Cross after his


fashion, that his
fidel
life

and kingdom should be preserved.

"

And

that in-

not acquiescing, Heraclius straightway beheaded him.

But because

he had been a king, and had after a manner honored the Cross of Christ, he ordered him to be buried."

The tower was

destroyed, the silver

given to the soldiers, but the gold and precious stones the
reserved to repair the churches which the tyrant had destroyed.

Emperor

The
version

rest of the

legend

is

given

in

the quaint language of Caxton's

Heraclius " thcnne tooke the

Holy Crosse and brought


fro the

it

agayne to

Jerusalem.

And

as he

descended

Mount

of

Olyuete and wolde


his Passyon,

haue entred by the gate, by whiche our Sauyour wente to


on horsbacke adurned
'

as a

kyng, sodainly the stones of the gates de-

"After reading this history, some conception may be formed of the important place held by the cross in Christian Iconography. The cross, as has been said, is not merely the instrument of the punishment of Jesus Christ, but is also the figure and symbol of the Saviour. Jesus, to an Iconologist, is present in the cross as well as in the lamb, or the lion. Chosroes flattered himself that in possessing the cross, he possessed the Son of God, and he had it enthroned on his right hand, just as the Son is enthroned by God the Father, so also the earliest Christian artists, wlien making a representation of the Trinity, placed a cross beside the Father and the Holy
Spirit
;

a cross only, without our crucified Lord.

The

cross did not only recall Christ to mind,


is

but actually showed him.

In Christian Iconography, Christ

actually present under the


' :

form
is

and semblance of the


there
is

cross.

The

cross

is

our crucified Lord in person


Christ. Icon., vol.
i.,

Where

the cross

the martyr,' says S. Paulinus."

Didron,

p. 369.

Legends of

the Cross
all

93
the

scciulcd and ioynetl thciii toj^ydcr in the gate like a wallc, and

people were greatly abasshed.

And

thenne the angel of our

Lorde apReturn of the


cross to Jerusalem.

pvered vpon the gate holdyng the syne of the Crosse in his ^ o o ^ l^ rJ honde & sayd, Whan the Kyng of Heuen wente to hys Pas-

syon by

this gate,

he was not arrayed lyke a kyng, or on horsehunibl_\-

backe, but

came

vppon an a^se

in

she\vyiige the

example

of

humvlvtc, which he

K'fte to

thcym
in

that

honmir h\-m.

And whan

that

was sayd he departed


of his

& vanysshed

awaye.

Thenne the Emperour tooke

hosen and shone hymself

wepynge, and despoyled

hym

of

all

his clothes in to his sherte.

and then tooke the Crosse of our Lorde and


the gate.

bare

it

mochc humbly xnto


all

And anone And

the hardcne.sse of the

stones sette the celestyal comniandement, and remeued anone and opened

and gaaf entre vnto


renewed."

theym

that entred.

thus was the precious

tree of the Crosse restablyshed in his place,

and the ancient miracles


were cured, ten

dead man was

raised,

four

paralytics

affected with leprosy cleansed, di\-ers de\ils were cast out and diseases

healed, and as a proof of the di\-ine blessing the sweet odor, that had

departed from the day when the Cross had been removed from the tower
of Chosroes, returned, and refreshed them all with its sweetness. " Thenne the Emperour dyde repayre the chirches and gaft to them

grete gyftes and after rctourned

home

to his

Empyre."
14, insti-

This E.Kaltation of the Cross really took place on September

about

A.L).

620.

The

festival

has greater antiquity, having been


of

tuted when S.

Helena placed the Cross on the summit

an

altar,

September
Section

24, A.D. 326.

2.
is

Traditions Respecting the

Wood

of the

Cross. To

various trees

assigned the mournful honor of furnishing the material of

the holy Cross.


it

Perhaps the most general tradition ascribes ^he Cross Made ofthe Aspen. to the aspen,' because the leaves ever tremble, as if
'

Other traditions cluster around the aspen c-x.^r..- All the trees drooped their leaves at the sacrifice, but the aspen haughtily asked, " What are thy sufferings to us? the plants need no atonement, we are not fallen." The Angel of Death breathed upon the Mrs. Jameson also relates a legend of the journey of boaster, and it has trembled ever since. As the infant Jesus and the blessed Virgin and S. Joseph, when flying from Judea to Egypt. they passed throvigh a forest of trees, they would have lost their way, but for the guidance of an
time of their Creator's
angel.

As they entered the forest all the trees bowed themselves in reverence to the infant God, Then only the aspen in her exceeding pride refused to acknowledge Him, and stood upright. the infant Christ pronounced a curse against her for her arrogance, and her leaves have trembled
ever since.

Legends of the Afadonna,

p. 234.

94
shuddering
at the

History of the Cross


remembrance
of the awful use in wliich
it

had been

once employed.
Anciently,
it

was a widespread

belief that the Cross of

our Lord was

made

of the mistletoe which formerly was a large tree, but the curse

which
Mistletoe the Material of the Cross.

He

bore

who hung o
it

thereon, being in part transferred a i

to

tlic

tree itsclf,

dwindled away and became the parasite


of the Uruids in gathering the
it,

It IS

now.

The ceremonies

mistletoe,

or"

All Heal," as they called

were peculiarly symbolical

of the offices of the Cross.

In Scandinavian mythology, the mistletoe


is

furnishes the

wood from which


kills

made

the arrow with which Hadur, at

the instigation of Loki,

Baldur.

Formerly, small pieces of mistletoe

were worn as amulets to protect pious souls from the temptations of


Loki.

some parts of Great Britain the elder is respected as the wood which bore the Lord of Life in death, and some persons religiously abstain
In
_ Cross ,, Made
,

from using o
jpg

it

as fuel.

In this instance the legends respectr


fc

of Elder.

^\^^ (.^^g

qJ ^^^ Saviour

and that
sa}-s
:

of his betrayer

have

become interchanged.
Siloam,
is still

Sir

John Mandeville

" Fast by the Pool of

the elder tree on which Judas hanged himself in despair


'

when he

sold and betrayed our Lord."


in

That

this tradition

was
is

ac-

knowledged

England as

late as the

golden age of Elizabeth


in

seen

from the frequent references by authors


Shakespeare thus
"
pla}-s

her time and previously.

with the word in Love's Labour's Lost.

Holifernes : Begin, Sir. You are niv elder. Biroii : Well followed Judas was hanged on an elder."
;

Ben Jonson says

also in
"

Every ^LTn
sliall

in

His Hiunour

He

be your Judas, and you

Shall be his elder tree to

hang on."
''

Nixon,
in

in his

Strange Footpost, writes,


of those elders

Our gardens when they have


so

them not one

whereupon

many covetous Judases

hang themselves."
Richard Flecknoe also refers to the same tree whose
'

Mandeville, Travels, p. 175, Bolin's ed.


1S73, p. 638.

In Geniiaiiy and .Sciiidinavia the elder was sup-

posed to be the abode of the goddess Huldah and her servants the elves.

Every

Sat. (Vienna),

June

7,

Legends of
"

the Cross

95

Who

Virtue oft from Judas came hanged' himself upon that same." Dial

lint.

In the cpiioLjuc to Lilly's Alcxandtr niid Catnpaspc, the elder is re" \'iili ma_\- make doves of vultures, roses ferred to as a mark of shame.
of nettles, laurel for a ^arlaml, or eldei' for a disgrace."

Shakespeare makes

it

also an

emblem

of grief:

" (Irovv patience

And

let

the stinking elder grief intwine


tlie

His perishing root with

increasing vine."
Cyi)ihcliih\

Act

iv.,

Sc.

2.

There

is

a curious tradition that the Cross was

made
5.

of an apple-tree,

derived from a far-fetched gloss on Canticles

viii.,

"I

raised thee

up under the apple-tree; there thy mother brought thee


forth: there she brought thee forth that bare thee."
'

The cross Made i ofan Appie-xrce


tin

the Vulg.ite the verse reads: "

//;/

comipta

est

inatcr tua,

violata est

gcnctrix ttia."

An ancient MS. in the possession of Dr. Adam Clarke, formerly belonging to the youngest son of Edward III., reads, " There
is

defouled

she that got thee."


also has

The oak
'

been supposed to be the tree wliich contributed the


Judas some
differ.

But even as

td tlie ileatli of

The doubt
manner.

arises

from the word aTriji'iaro


say he was lumg on a
fig

which may
tree, others

refer to suffocation without specifyini^ the

Some

See Fuller's Pisga/i View of Palestine, b. iii, c. 13. Euthymius and CEcumenius say that the hanging did not kill him, but the rope broke and he cast himself headlong. See Hrowne, Kelig. Med., sec. xxii., p. 52 and Inquiry into Vulgar and Common
on a sycamore.
;

Errors,

b. vii., cap.

II.

The Mussulmans

reverence
of the

all

places consecrated to the

memory

of

Christ and the blessed Virgin, except the

tomb

likeness of his do not acknowledge, for they believe that Curzon, Monasteries of the face to Judas, who was crucified and buried in j^lace of his Master. Levant, p. 162. There is a curious tradition which is occasionally met with in art. Judas, knowing that his Master would descend into Hades and liberate the souls confined there, and conduct them to Paradise, hastened, after his treachery, to liang himself, in order that he might precede our Lord into Hades, and thus be saved. But the Devil bent down the tree on which the traitor was suspended, so that his feet touched the earth, and retained it in that position until

Holy Sepulchre, the sanctity Jesus ascended into Heaven, leaving the

of which they

Christ had passed through Hades, and then permitted the wretched soul " to go to his place."

own

Ciampini, Vetera Monimeiita,

torn,

iii

tab. ix., fig. 31, gives an

example from the

brass doors of the .'\rchiepiscopal

Church at Beneventano. There was a tree formerly called after the traitor, and hated accordingly. Pulci in Morgante Ala^giore makes the traitor Ganelon jjlan the ambush against Charlemagne in the pass of Roncesvalles, under the shade of a Judas tree. ' Have we not here the origin of the common tradition that the apple was the forbidden Refer to Clarke on text. fruit? Also Gill on Canticles for some other traditions more curious
than valuable.

96

History of the Cross


it

material for the altar of the sacrifice, not only because


tree in Palestine,
Cross Made of the Oak.

was

common
proba-

and well

fitted

by

its

strength for the purpose, but also

because the

fragments

which

bear

the

greatest

biUty of genuincness appear to be of that wood.'

The

oak, also, as Gretser observes, has been sanctified


teries

by many divine mys-

and manifestations.

It

was under an oak that God covenanted

with

Abraham

at

Mamre

for the salvation of his seed.


it

Under
by

an oak

the angels awaited Abraham's hospitality, and repaid

foretelling

the birth of Isaac.


buried, and the-

Under an oak Deborah, Rebckah's nurse, was name of it was called Allon-bachuth (Gen. xxxv., 8).
his idols; the angel

Under an oak Jacob buried

appeared to Gideon

under an oak; and other examples could be cited. Ciaccon, commenting on Isa. vi., I3, 13, says; " And the Lord has removed men far
away, and there
yet
it

shall

be a great forsaking
it

in

the midst of the land.


as an

But

shall
is in

be a tenth, and

shall return

...

oak whose sub-

stance
in the

them when they

cast their leaves; so the holy seed shall be

substance thereof."

And, continues the commentator, " so the

Jews, ravished and decimated by the Romans, yet the remainder of

them, saved by the oaken Cross, preserved the seed of blessing and the
salvation of the

human
Legend

race."

Such

is

the

of tlie Cross.

One

of the

most imaginative and

fantastic, yet

one of the most popular myths of the Middle Ages, and


It

ever a favorite subject for artists both in glass and fresco.


pears at Troyes,
in

ap-

the windows of the churches of S. Martin es-vignes,

of S. Pantaldon, of S. Madeleine,

and of

S. Nizier.

It

is

frescoed on

the walls of the choir of S. Croce in Florence by Agnolo Gaddi, and


Pietro della Francesca has celebrated
it

in a series of

paintings in the

chapel of the Bacci, in the Church of S. Francesco at Arezzo.

Perhaps the most interesting example


chapel of the Guild of the Holy Cross

is

the fresco on the walls of the

in

the Church of the Trinity at

Stratford-upon-Avon.

The Guild

dates

at least

from the year 1296,

when

it

was authorized

to build a hospital

and

this chapel.

Shakespeare

doubtless drank inspiration from these paintings, but the same spirit of

vandalism which coated his bust with whitewash

in

like

manner covered
;

these inestimable works, so that their very e.xistence was forgotten


'

and

Lipsiiis,

Gretser,

De De

Crticc, lib. Criicc, lib.

iii.,
i.,

cap. 13.

cap. 6.

Legends of

the Cross

97

Horace Walpiilc declared that no specimen


existed in England.
light.
It is
its

of this art (fresco painting)

15ut, in

1S04, they

were discovered and restored to

not necessary to say that the legend must be read with a view to
liurn in the time of earl\- Chiisli.m liter-

allegorical interj)rctaliiin.

ature,

when every page and ^


.
I

text of
it

Holv Scripture was


1

. Interpretation

read in the light of symbolism,

attained

its full

growth

in

of the

Legend.

the Middle Ages, which, as

Warton
believed

says,

were those "


contain a

of \'ision

and and

mystery:

every

work

was

to

double meaning.
;

Nothing escaped

this eccentric spirit of refinement


. . .

and abstraction

together with the Hible

tin:
'

whole general history

of ancient

times was ex[)lained allegoricall)."

Studying the story


ings hidden
in

in

the right

spirit,

there are

many

beautiful teach-

the fantastic language of the legend.


It is

For instance, David


not necessary to dwell
in

begirt the tree with thirty rings of sapphire.

on the number,

for its

symbolism

is

apparent, but note that

the lanjustice,

guage of heraldry, sapphire represents Azure, which symbolizes


humility, loyalty, and perse\-erance.
sents the hea\en, which
of
is

Colombiere says, " Azure repreall

the highest of

things created, the tribunal In sacred archae-

God and

the everlasting mansions of the blessed."

ology, blue symbolizes piety, sincerity, divine contemplation, godliness


etc.

Reading the story thus, understandingly, we can perceive why


is

David
of
his

represented as thus adorning the tree, and placing

it

in

the part

garden consecrated by private devotion and penitence for his


sins.

grievous

The Cross was spoken

of as

made
"

of three species of

wood, and these


of Isaiah

were varied according to the lesson desired.

The words

were
.

sometimes cited by the Fathers. ^


shall

come unto thee; the

fir

glorv of Lebanon ^. _. & The Three ,, Vaneties of wood. tree, the pine tree, and the

The

box together,
the place of

to beautify the place of


feet glorious "
(Isa. Ix.,

my
13).

sanctuary; and
S.

will

make
Often
in

my

Chrj'sostom so applies

the

te.xt.

In the Vulgate the words are cypress, pine, and cedar.


is

the transverse

spoken of as made of palm, for the Bridegroom

Canticles says, "

I will go up to the palm tree, I boughs thereof " (Cant, vii., 8), alluding to the stretching out

will take hold of the

of our

Lord's hands upon the Cross.


'

Hence we

are told the Cross

was made

Warton, Introduction, Diss. Early English Poetry.

gS
of the

History of the Cross


palm
of victory, the cedar of incorruption,

and the ohves

of royal

and

priestly benediction,'

But

in later

legends the

number

of the trees

is

increased.

The simple
idea,

symbolism

of the Trinity gives place to a

more complex
together

and yet
various

one

concentrating

and

gathering

the

symbols of the second person of the Trinity, His


His Church.
kinds of wood.

office

and

Hence the Cross


Four
is

is

said to have been

composed
of stability

of four

the

number which speaks


is

and the

material universe, and the Church four quarters of the earth, for

made up from the elect from the Abraham was bidden, " Lift up now thine
"

eyes
(Gen.

northvv'ard,

and southward, and eastward, and westward

xiii., 14).

"

Thus was

the throne on the four quarters extended."

The

four quarters were watered by the rivers of Paradise, four streams

yet proceeding from one head.

The

altar of incense

was ordained to

be four-square, with
fice

its

four horns sprinkled with the blood of the sacri-

by which the offering was rendered acceptable.


in

The sun was

created

on the fourth day, and


trumpet
;

Revelation

it

is

stricken out under the fourth


of the

and the sun

is

a well-known

symbol

Lord himself

in

the

Incarnation."

The symbolism might be


its

carried out further, but

enough

has been adduced to show


not merely accidental.

applicability,

and that the coincidences are

In the Lcgciida Aiirca,^

we
title

read that the upright was of cedar, the


of olive,

transverse of cypress, the


rest, of
Interpretation of Four Pieces
1

and the suppcdancuni, or footinterpret


it.
r
i i
i

palm.
,

And

thus

he

mam

support

ot

we would venture to ^ the Cross was of cedar,


i

that

is,

the

altar

upon which the

sacrifice

was offered was of the wood

consecrated, not only by being employed in Solomon's temple, but by


'

Nicquetus quotes several authois

in favor of the supposition that the

Cross was made of only


lib. i.,

three kinds of wood, viz., cypress, pine, and cedar.


gloss on S.

Hist, de Tituli S. Crucfs,

cap.

3.

A
;

Clement places cedar

in the root,

palm

in the upright,

and cypress

in the transverse

an ancient hymn locates cedar

palm sustains the hands, while The Venerable Bede says the olive '' rejoices" in the title. Gretser, De Cruce, lib. i., cap. 5. the Cross was made of cypress, cedar, pine, and box, " But the box was not in the Cross unless in the title." The upright was of cypress as far as the transverse, which was of cedar and the top
in the foot, cypress in the upright,

of pine.
''

Bede

in, 0'//rtY.

The

four living creatures

which stood round the throne

will occur to every one.

This

term, living creature, is sometimes of good {ydov) and sometimes of evil (O/piov) hence, as Williams says, " as four is of evil and also of good, it may be of the animal nature of man sanctified in the

New Man."

Isaac Williams on the Apocalypse,

pji.

68, 70.

For a

fuller

development

of the symbolism of this


^

number

see also Williams, pp. 84, 123, 149, 16S, 271.


Crticis.

Legenda Aurca,

De

Inventione S.

Leo-ends of the Cross '&


having been previously appointed by Moses as one of the .symboHcal

99
in-

gredients in the oiTering for leprosy and defilement consequent upon

contact with death.'


tree of

The

cj-press sustaining the outstretched arms, the

mourning, yet ever green, as was the love everlasting, which,

while

it

wept over

sinners,
olive,

extended

its

arms

to

embrace the whole world


title,

in its sacrifice.

The

on which was the

the universal pledge

of peace, proclaimed that the Prince of Peace died to restore peace be-

tween God and man.


of

The palm,

the crown of earthly glory and symbol


foot.

martyrdom,
It

is

trampled under

was an early tradition that Christ was

crucified in the
it.

same place
sa_\-

where

Adam
where
l"or

was buried.
death

S.

Chrysostom alludes to
lieth,
'

"

Some

that

Adam
place ^

died there, anil there

and that Jesus,


there
also
set

in that

ThePiaceof
nu^'^^"^r^ ''".t Christ s Death the same.

had

reigned, o

up the
1

trophy.
o\'er

He went

forth bearing the Cross as a tropin-

the tyranny of death, and as conquerors do, so bare

He upon
all

his

shoulders the symbol of victory."^


reconciled " Ar, in

Even

locally,
in

thus the words are

Adam
22).

all

die,

even so

Christ shall
saith

be

made

alive"

(I

Cor.

x\%,

"An
and

apt connection,"

S.

Jerome,

smooth

to the ear,

but not true."


arise
is

Another

te.xt

was

also adopted.
shall

Awake thou
at the

that sleepest

from the dead, and Christ

give thee light."

In early art

Adam

frequently represented as rising

very foot of the Cross, holding a chalice to catch the precious


life.''

blood, which, having fallen upon his grave, had recalled him to

Sometimes the story

is

varied,

and we are told that

in

one and the same

place where the sacrifice was offered for that sin which " the blood of
'

Leprosy was

in

a certain sense the sacrament of death, "

an inward corruption and sin which none but priests as vicegerents of


xiii.

The outward and visible sign" of God could remove. Lev.

Hence our
''

blessed Saviour ajipealed to his curing that disease as proof of His Divinity.

S. .ALitt. xi., 5.

S.

Chrysostom on
Ixxi.

S.

John

early Church.

Origen speaks of
;

it

f/om. 85, p. 756, Oxf. Trans. as well known in his time.

This belief was

common
;

in the

Tract, xxxv. in Matt.


ii.,

also S.
S.

Ambrose, Epis.,
there,
32.
it

S. .'Vthanasius, Ser.

de Passionc Opera, tom.

p. 90,

Benedict ed.

Augustine writes, "

The

ancients hold that because


it

Adam was

the

first

man. and was buried

was called Calvary, because


list

holds the head of the

Jerome adds Isaac to the Molano, Hist. Imag. Sacra., lib.


S.

of those sleeping there.

iv.,

cap. 11.

S.

Basil
first

human race." Dc Civitate Dei, cap. Tom. i., p. 937, Paris ed., 161S. says, "Probably Noah was not ignorborn of
all

ant of the sepulchre of our forefather and that of the

mortals,

and

in that place.
5.

Calvary, the Lord suffered, the origin of death there being destroyed."
also held

Isa.
it

cap.

It

was

by some,

S.

Jerome

says, that

Jerusalem .was the centre,


i.,

or, as

was frequently ex.S.


;

pressed, the navel of

the earth.

Gretser, lib.

cap

17.

Tertnllian and
lib.

Cyril are

more

minute, and say that Calvary was the centre.

Tertul.,
^

Contra. Mar.,

ii.

S. Cyril Collect.
ii.,

Led.

xiii.

History of our Lord, vol.

p. 207.

loo
bulls

History of the Cross


and goats could not take away," there was the offering
of Cain

and

Abel, the sacrifice of

Noah when he came


when the

out of the ark, there also Abrafloor of

ham
upon

offered Isaac, there

was the threshing

Araunah which David


once dwelt

bought to

sacrifice therein

plague, which his pride had brought

Israel,

had been stayed.

In the

same

place,

also,

Melchizedek, and Solomon built his temple.'

Donne,
fully

in his

Hymn

to

God

uiy

God

in

my

sickness, has thus beauti-

handed down
"

to us an old-time tradition:

We

tiiink that

Paradise and Calvarie,


;

and Adams tree stood in one place Look Lord, and find l)0th Adams met in me As Jirst Adam's sweat surrounds my face, May the last Adam's blood my soul embrace."
Christ's Cross
;

\.\\(t

As
heaven

the tree of the Cross was planted in the terrestrial paradise, so


it

it

was believed that


at

would be transferred to the


judge the world

celestial, to

reappear in

the end of time borne in the arms of Christ, or of his angels,


to
at

when the Lord descends


the sign
The Appearance
of the Penitent is

the last day.'

Yet

already

known
relates
.

there, according to an apocrv-

phal gospcl

which
.

that

while

Enoch and

Elias
i
i

Thief

in

Hades.

were
the Saviour, "

communmg
penitent

respectmg the descent mto Hades by


thief entered

tt

The

Paradise bearing upon his

shoulder a cross as a token given by his

Redeemer

to attest, to the

guardian angel of the gates, his right to admission."^

Perhaps

this

legend was

in

the

mind

of quaint old Ouarles, and found utterance in

his expressive words, "

The

Cross of Christ

is

the key of Paradise."

But the legends clustering around the Cross are not always fraught
T A Legend

r.v. of the Redbreast.

only with anguish; there are some simple and beautiful t> r
'

storics intertwined with the hearth-lore of

many

nations.

For instance, that

of the robin-redbreast.

" Bearing

His cross, while Clirist passed by forlorn, His Godlike forehead by the mock crown torn, A little bird took from that crown one thorn To soothe the dear Redeemer's throbbing head.
p. 32.

'

Adam, Happiness of the Church,

Didron, Christ. Icon., vol.

i.

p. 369.

Gospel of Nicodemus, chap. xx. thief was admitted into Paradise, as


^

Some
S.

of the Fathers allude to the belief that the penitent


says,

Chrjsostom

human

race."
;

De

Crtice et Lair.,

ii.,
!

2.

S. Cyril also says,

" before Abraham, before the whole " The faithful Abraham had not
yet entered,

yet entered

but the robber enters


Cattr. Lc-ct.

Moses and the Prophets had not

and the

lawless robber enters."

\m., 31.

Legends of

the Cross
is

loi

That biril did wliat she ((nihl His blood, 't Down-dropping, dyed her tender bosom red. Since tlien no wanton boy disturbs her nest Weasel, nor wild cat, will her young molest. All sacred deem that biril of ruddy breast.'
;

said,

W'hitticr lias

embalmed

in

one

oi his exquisite

poems an

old Swedish

tradition that the robin-redbreast brings daily a drop of water to cool

the tongues of those parched with thirst in Hell.


effect of the scorching fires that the bird

His red breast

is

the

braves

in his act

of mercy.

Of the
agony. J o
of Julius

cross-bill

we

arc told, he

ti'icd

to minister to his

Maker
,

in his
.

Longfello->v gives us a translation from the t> o

German

Legend

Mosen.

The Lord and Creator


all

of the universe

,., of the Cross-b.u.

being forsaken of
the
nail,

his creatures save this little bird,

who, striving

at

" Stained with blood, and never tiring

With

its

beak

it
't

doth not cease,

From
"

the Cross

would

free the Saviour

Its Creator's .Son release.

And
'

the Saviour speaks


all

in

mildness
!

Blest be thou of
as

the good

Bear

token of

this

moment,
'"
!

Marks
Mrs.

of blood

and holy rood

Hemans reminds
And

us of the arum,
"

Beneath the cross


hollow of

it

grew

in the vase-like

its leaf,

Catching from that dread shower of agony A few mysterious dro]is, transmitted thus

Unto

the groves and

hills,

their healing stains

heritage for storm or vernal wind


to waft

Never

awav

"
!

JJ'ihh/

Walk.

The granadilla, or passion-flower, seemed such a miracle of nature, when descriptions and drawings of it were first received in Spain and
Bosio hesitated about taxing the credulity of his .j.^^^ readers, and fortified his description by reference to " persons of quality and gravity " who had travelled in the New World.
Italy, that
Passion-

Flower,

The
it

pious author of the Triiiuipli of the Cross avows his conviction, " that
'

Author unknown, Xoles and

Qi/tvic-s.

4th ser., vol.

iv., p.

390.

I02

History of the Cross


as
it if

seemed
print

the great Creator of the Universe had been pleased to im-

on

the evident image and clear signification of the instrument of

the Passion of his only begotten Son in order that in after times they

might aid

in the

conversion of the idolatrous people."

His description

Passion Flower.

From
of the flower
is

Bosio's

La

Ti'ioufautc

t-

Gloriosa Croce.

such as might be expected from his simple yet fervid


petals are

devotion.

The upper

tawny

in Peru,

but white, tinted with

rose color, in

New

Spain.

The

fringe of filaments above, resembling the

scourge with which our Lord was beaten, are the color of blood.

In the

Legends of
middle of the flower
rises a

the Cross
pillar

103
to

stem, like the


little

which Jesus was


like

bouiul; abo\e this are three triangular

branches

the

nails, sur-

mounting
two
in

is

the crown

of thorns surrounded

by a

veil of

threads seventyin

number, corresponding to the traditionary number of thorns


like a peacock-feather.
like a lily,

our Saviour's crown, colored


Ijlood color "

In the centre
five

and

surrounding the column are leaves


of

each spotted with

drops

deep

which resemble the


call
it

fi\'e

wounds

Christ received on

the Cross,"' hence the Spaniards


de las
ciiico llagos).

the llouer of the five

wounds

{^flor

The

leaves of the plant resemble the head of the

lance with which the side of Jesus


or vine
is

was pierced.
it.

If

any part

of the flower
is

broken, blood-like
if

saj)

drops from
its

The

flower

generally

partly closed, as

carefully guarding
it

wonderful mysteries; Bosio,

therefore, gives a representation of

open, that the pious reader

may
it

contemplate

it

with

spiritual profit,

and he devoutly suggests that

would seem that

Infinite

Wisdom had

concealed these mysteries of the

Cross and Passion until the time the P.Iost High had preordained to fulfil S. I'aul's words: " The mystery which hath been hid from ages and

from generations, but now

is

made manifest

to his saints:

would make known what


the Gentiles " (Col.
i.,

is

the riches of the glory of this mystery

To whom God among

26, 27).
fail

But time and space would

us to gather together a tithe of the


in

holy memories which have been embodied

thought and word by the

devout worshippers of the Cross.

We

cannot do better than end this

part of our subject with the following words from Mrs.

Hemans's Wood

Walk

"

Many

a sign

Of

the great sacrifice which

won

us

Heaven
!

The woodman and

the mountaineer can trace

And be it so rock, on herb, and flower. They do not wisely that, with hurried hand. Would pluck these salutary fancies forth

On

From the strong soil within the peasant's breast, away And scatter them far, far too fast

As worthless weeds.

Oh

little

do we know

When
Section
3.

they have soothed,

when saved

The Miraculous Appearances

on the 26th of October, according to


cording to other historians, A.D. 312,

Cross. It was Gibbon, the 7th of November, acthe eve of the battle between Waxof the

I04

History of the Cross


some say
;

entius and Constantine, about midday,


to decHne towards
Appearance of
the Cross to Constantine.

its

setting, say others;

when
in

to

when the sun began the Roman Emperor

and

his arm\' there

appeared

the heavens a cross of hght

abovc that

of the sun, \\ith the inscription, in a constel-

lation of stars, according to

some

authorities,

EN

TOTTD.

NIK A,' " In this Conquer."

Amazed, the pagan augurs presaged that the sign of the Cross, wliich they " believed to be deadly, not joyful, to
men," portend-

IN

HOC VlNGES.
ET
La TrionfanU

ed the destruction of the whole

army/ Eusebius
tells

us that

SINFONIA
From
Bosio's

FILIIS

at sight of this

VIXIT ANN. XLVIII.

M.V. D.IIII

apparition, Con-

stantine,
e Gloriosa Croce.

who

was
it

wavering
portended,

between paganism and Christianity, was

in

doubt as to what

and

retired to rest, anxious

and thoughtful.

During the night Christ apin

His Vision
at Night.

pearcd to him, together with the sign before seen


heavens, and bade him use
it

the

as a standard for protection


his

against his enemies.

As soon

as

it

was day, he related the vision to

friends, and then assembling the workers of gold and precious stones he

ordered them to imitate with their materials his description.'


torian gives a
uin.

The

his-

minute account of

this standard,

which was called the Labar-

A long spear,

plated with gold, with a transverse bar, formed a cross.

From

the bar was suspended a square banner of purple, interwoven with

The Labarum.

gold and precious stones.


traits

Above

this

were golden por-

of

the

Emperor and
brilliant

his sons,

and the whole was


have

surmounted by a golden crown,


been preserved
'

with gems, within which was


It is said to

placed the Greek letter X, intersected by the letter P.


in

the palace at Constantinople until the ninth century.'

Nicephorus and Zoiiaras say that the inscription was in Latin, IN HOC VINCE. Eiiseit was in Greek. The commander Leo affirmed the same. Brentius thinks the appearance was that of the monogram ^. Gretser, De Crucs, lib. ii., cap. 37 see also Cath.
bius implies
:

Orth.,
in the p.
7,
^

ii.,

ig,

p.

168,

and Mosheim,
of

ii.,

iv.,

i,

note 2g, 30.


'

Neander

says,

"Undoubtedly
Hist., vol.
cap. 36.
ii.

native language
note.

the
-'

Roman

soldiers:

/ Noc Vincc.'"
;

Eccles.

Baronius, Annals., 312

Gretser,

De

Crucc,

lib. ii.,

Eusebius, Life of Constantine, book i., c. 22-31. Hemans, Ancient Christianity and Saered Art, p. 90.

Legends
Such a magnificent
than for a battle-field.

of the Cross
seem more

105
fitting for a procession

stantlard woiiltl

To guard

it,

therefore, fifty chosen

men

(called

Draconarii, from one of the pagan

Roman

standards) were appointed,

who
in

carried

it

by turns, and \vhen


il

an\- part of

the

army was hard


it

jjressed

bailie,

tliilher

was borne,

antl

by the confidence

inspired, tlie

army

was

in\incible.

And, according
legend,
never
for

to the

the

bearers

were

wounded,

the missiles aimetl


staff.

at

them struck the

The device of the monogram was


shield
also engravetl
his

by Constantine upon
and
coins.

The account
vision
I

of the

was given by the


to
. , . History of
'he story,

Emperor

Eusebius, and

solemni}- confirmed with

an oath.

For thirteen
the
a

hundred years no one


questioned
story.

From

Bosio's

The Labarum. La Trionfantc e

Gloriosa Croce.

Godefroi,

F"rench

writer of the seventeenth century,

was the

first

who impugned

the vera-

city of the historian, or of Constantine; and, of course, the infidel

Gibbon
con-

e.Kpresses

his

opinion that Protestant and philosophic readers of the

present age will incline to believe " that, in the account of his
version, Constantine attested a wilful falsehood,

own

by a solemn and
that

delib-

erate

perjury."'

But

Constantine

declared

the

wliolc

army

witnessed the miracle.

He was
alive'

in his thirty-eighth

pened, and there must have been


himself, and

many

in

that

year when it haparmy younger than


his account,

who were

when Eusebius published


its
xx.

and

yet there
'

is

no evidence of
cli.ip.

having been contradicted.


He was
letters,

Nor do we

Gibbon, Dceline and Fall,

'

The Acts

of Arteniius are extant.

deprived of his commission, on account of his Christian


testifies that

he saw the sign and read the

army and was afterwards by Julian the Apostate. Artemius and that many witnesses could be produced
in

Constantiiie's
faith,

io6
read of any disturbance
their

History of the Cross


when the Labaruin was presented to the army as Would the rugged Roman soldiers have accepted,
the

standard.
of

The Change
the

without the most weicrhty reason, a J


Eaglcs,
,

change o
i
i

of

their

Roman Eagle beloved


,

whicli

for SO
r

many
i

centuries had flown

for the Cross.

before

them

to victory, for an
?

nnage hated and accursed,

and only

telling of

shame and ignominy


of heathen,

doubtless, mainly

composed

army which had


purple.

called

The army at that time was, It was the it ruled Rome. Constantine from Britain to Rome, and placed
and
as the successful candidate for the imperial

him over four competitors,


power without

Would Constantine have dared


sufficient cause
?

to

risk

his

popularity and

In

modern

times, could

Washington
Elba to

have led the American troops from Valley Forge to Yorktown under
the standard of a gallows? or Napoleon liave returned from
Paris carrying the insignia of a guillotine
?

Yet these symbols would

not have been less abhorrent to Americans, or to Frenchmen, than was


the cross to Romans.'

There

is

also

pagan testimony as

to the miracle.

In a panegyric de-

livered immediately after the victory, the heathen orator asks, "

What
thy

god, what divine presence encouraged thee, that

when

nearly

all

companions
thou didst

in

arms and commanders not only had secret misgivings,


tlic

but had open fears of


tlu'sclf

omen, yet against the warnings of the diviners,

perceive that the time of delivering the city was


that

come?""
happened.
gested.

Hence we know

something miraculous must have

No

other miracle save that of the Cross has ever been sug-

About the year .-X.D. 314 or 315, Constantine erected a triumphal arch at Rome, with an inscription testifying that he liad gained the
victory,

"

iiistiiictii

ifiviiiitatis.

mentis uiagnitiidinc."

Also, as soon as

he entered
cross in

he caused to be made a statue of himself holding a his hand, and with an inscription to the effect that " with the he had delivered the city from the " dominion of a

Rome

life-giving sign "

tyrant.
from the army.
cap.
36.

Vila Acta. S. Artemii


jiowever, thinks that

apud

stir, torn, v., cited

by Gretser,

Dd

Crtice, lib.

ii.,

IJurtdii,

the authenticity of this

document may be doubted.


far
.

Eccles. Hist., chap, xxx., p. 644, note.


'

Cicero says, " That the very

name

of the cross

was not only


.

removed from the body


.

of

Roman citizen, but even from his thoughts, eyes, and ears Roman and a freeman." Cicero pro Rabir., cited by Gretser, Dc
-

a> an
lib. ii,,

indignity to a
cap. 36.

Cruce,

Eiisebius, Eccles. Hist.,

book

ix.,

chap.

g.

Les/ends of the Cross


Bosio also describes and gu'cs a representation of a medal.
oij\erse bears the
verso,

lo:

Tlic

head of Constantius, the son

of Constantine, the re-

soldier

holding a labaruiii,

behind him
fii^iiie

is

of Vic-

tory

crowning
laurel,
inscrij)1(

him with
and the
tiiin is
1

ic

SlC-

No Victor Eris. Thus we have the


Medal of Constantine.

From

Bosio's

La

l^rioii fault' Croce.

testimony of history
statues,
It

and medals, which are generally considered tolerable

jM-oof.'

has been supposed by


in

some

that the sentence

was not actually


signifying

formed

the

sk\-,

but only

victory, or tliat only the

some emblem, such as a crown monogram -P appeared, and Laclatter.

tantius

is

quoted as testifying to the

Before a. D.
in

or the

Monogram

314 he published his Z'r Mortilnis Pn\u-aitoniui,


says: " Constantine was

which he
sign

admonished

in

sleep to

mark the heavenly


of

God on
and

the
so

shields,

to

engage

the
did

enemy.
as

He
r

he was bidden

and

ma

k s the

name of Christ on
the shields by the
letter

drawn

Medal

of Constanti

From

Bosio's

La

Trioiifantc Croce.

across

them with
circLim-

the top
flexed.

Armed
in

with this sign, his troops take up arms,"

etc.'^

Here

is

many words, of a cross, but it maybe asked, does Lactantius refer only to the monogram when he speaks of a " licavcnly sign " ? The monogram was alread)" known to the heathen. It appears, for cxno mention,
so
'

For the contrary see Lardner, Credihilily of the Gospel, chap,


ed.l,
ii., iv.,

l.vxx.

Neaiider, vol.

ii.,

p.

II

Mosheim (Miirdock's
'

i,

notes
(i.

see also in favor, Dr. Good's Studies

of A'ature.

Lactaniius,

De

Mort. Pcysfcutortini,

44.

io8

History of the Cross


tlie

ample, on a coin of one of

Ptolemies, in the third century B.C., and


for Xpi/aro;, signifying "

has been supposed to be a contraction


benign, gracious."'

good,

At

all

events, Lactantius, in

common
testifies

with others,
that

some-

thing wonderful had


occurred.
little in

It

matters

what way, or

by what symbol, our

Lord did address


Constantine; that he

should
ligibly
Coin of Ptolemy.

do so
is

intel-

enough, and

From
is

Gretser's

Dc

Saiicta Criicc.

that the

Emperor un-

derstood the sign

plain, not only

because of his declaring himself from

that time forth on the side of Christianity, but also because of his erect-

ing

monuments

to that fact, one of which

is

standing to this day.

We

would

call

attention to another point.


of

When God

would over-

throw the Babylonish empire, the symbol


Condemnation
of

paganism, and reassert the

legitimacy of his

own

people, he wrote

upon the wall


call all

of

Beishazzar Dalacc. Bclshazzar's i^ Written on a Perishable Wall, ^g .^^,gj[ g^g thosc of Promisc,

When God

would

men, pagan r &


shall

unto redemption, he inscribed,

not

the sentence

of

condemnation upon a material wall which


of salvation
If

perish, but the

words

upon that firmament


story
?

into

which the

Saviour had ascended.

the

first

be true, and no Christian

doubts

it,

may

not the

last

be also

Although the appearance


recorded
history and

of the Cross to Constantine

is

perhaps the

only one generally considered as miraculous, there have been


in

many

others

tradition,

which

may have been

caused by

natural means, yet, at the time of their appearance, were considered


supernatural.
'

Gretser,

>i'

Cruce,

lib.

ii.,

cap. 38.

It

mifjht be sii])posed that the Christians adopted

monogram only with its pagan signification, but Tertullian bids them remember that they are named not from X.pr/6roi, " kindness," but from X/jiSroi "anointed." Af>ol. i., sec. 3. Perhaps the earliest use of the monogram, as used by Christians, that is extant, is in tlie epitaphs of Alexander and Marius, in the Catacombs. They were martyrs during the time of Adrian and
this

of Aiitonine in the early part of the second century.


' The contrast might be carried out. "Mene, Mene, Tckcl Upharsin," was inscribed upon a wall, symbolical of that " wall " between the Jew and the Gentile, which, the apostle says, shall

be broken down. mansions."

" /

this

Conquer"

vt&s written

beneath the floor of " the house of

many

Legends
S. Cyril gives

of the Cross

109

one instance.
in the

" During the holy days of I'entccost. in

the

tliird

hour of the day

second year of the episcopate

(,iMay 7,

351), there

appeared a luminous cross of enormous dimensions over holy

Golgotha,
biiUi.int,

extending even to the Mount of Olives;

it

was extremely

surpassing the light of the sun; and was seen not only by one

or two

iiuli\ iiluals,

but by the whole city.

It

was a passing phenomenon,


effect

but continued visible for several hours.


to inspire

The

on the believers was

them with
C.'hristian

fear

mingled with joy; the churches were thronged,


convinced of the truth of the Church's
'

not only by
for the

worshippers, but by Jewish and heathen candidates


initiation,

sacrament of
this

faith

by

symbol

of their salvation in the heavens."


it is

In the Ang/o-Sdxon Chronicle {ax the year jji

recorded, " In this


10773-

year a

fiery crucifix

appeared

in the

heavens after sunset,"

and

again in 806, "


in

This year, the second before the nones of June, a

cross appeared

the

During the reign


ence, in
tlie

moon." of Henry

"

II. of

England, on the

vigil of S.
, In

Laur_.
1

village of Dunstable, about the ninth hour of o

ime

oi

the day, the heavens opened and a cross of wonderful mag-

Henry

11.

nitude appeared, upon A\hich our Lord was affixed, and the blood was
seen flowing from the

wounds

in his hands, feet,

and

side.'

Upon

the death of Baldwin,

King

of Jerusalem, A.D. 1144, very early

upon the Festival

of the Resurrection of our Lord, the heavens near the


At Jerusalem,

meridian were opened, and the moon, which was brilliantly


shining, was " wiped out "

by the effulgence

of light,

and a cross as of

gold and gems appeared.'

On

the day of the coronation of Rudolph of Hapsburg, A.D. 1264, a


101264.

cross appeared in the sky.'^

An
gal.

interesting legend

is

interwo\'eii with the early history of Portuin the battle of


in Portugal,

Alphonsus, King of Lusitania, was about to meet


with a small force, the united armies of

Ourique,
kings.

five

near the hut of a hermit. numbers of Moors surrounded the army, and " devoured hope."
pitched
his

He had

tent

Vast

The

Christian chiefs,
soldiers for the
'

hoping against hope, endeavored to animate their


S.

morrow, which was the Festival of


^

James, the patron


Cruce,
lil). iii.,

.S.

Cyril, Opera, p. 247, Paris ed., 1640.

Gretser,

De

cap. 7.

* Ibid. Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, pp. 339, 345, I?ohn's ed. ' Ibid. The pious and credulous author gives many other instances, numerous to quote.
'

interesting, but too

no
saint of Spain.

History of the Cross


At evening the anchorite
visited

Alphonsus, and bade

him watch

for the tolhng of the bell at night, for then Christ

would ap-

pear to him.

Joyful, yet anxious,

Alphonsus kept the


air,

vigil.

At dawn

the wished-for sound rang through the

and the vision of the crucified

Lord appeared.
claimed
:

Excited beyond the bounds of reason, Alphonsus exSaviour of the world, dost thou appear unto

"

Why, O

believe in thee, and worship thee most fervently!

To

these

mc who infidels who


it

are thy enemies and mine, and are ignorant of thy

di\-inity,

were

better to appear, that they

cease to be insane."

Christ

may know the mystery of thy Cross, and commanded the army to be set in array,
in

and

at a

given signal the trumpets to sound


to the clangor.

concert.
it

Miraculous
as
if

effect

seemed added
falling

To

the Moors

seemed

the

heavens were

and the earth trembling.

bloody battle followed.


slain.

One hundred and

sixty thousand

Moslems were

Three days

after

the victory, Alphonsus was engaged

in distributing

the spoils, and to


in

each soldier was given a white shield, on


heraldry, the story of the victory was told.

which,
First,

the language of

because Christ had

revealed Himself on the Cross, there was a blue cross on a silver shield;
then, because five kings were conquered, five shields were inlaid

upon

the cross, upon every one of which were thirty pieces of


the Saviour was sold for so many.

silver,

because

In after years this was changed for


five coins

convenience; two decussated crosses of

placed

in

the middle

and one
In
1

at the top, so that the thirty pieces

might be computed.'

301, a fiery cross appeared over the Palazzo Publico in Florence


fell

before the city


At Florence.

by the treachery
as
I

of Charles de Valois, " so that

all

those

Compagni, "

who saw it, saw that God was


1643.
in

myself saw

it

clearly," says
'

Dino

grievously angry with the city."

Evelyn gives an account


for
In

of a
at

somewhat

similar prodigy, in his diary

March

10,

Being
the

Hatingfordberry, he beheld " a shining


in

clouil
England Appearance of a Sword.
at night,

air,

shape resemblins a sword, the point '^


'

reaching to the north;


rest of the

it

was

as bright as the
It

moon, the

sky being very serene.


till

began about eleven


all

and vanished not


'

about one, being seen by

the South of

England."

It will

occur to the reader's


its

memory

that a sword was seen

suspended over Jerusalem before


'

destruction.
on Language, 2d
series, p. 577.
i.,

Gretser,

Dv

Cruce,

lib. iii., c.ip.


ii.,

Mijller, Lectures

' ^

Dino Campagni,
iVotes

liook

p, 42,

quoted by Trollope, Hist of Florence, vol.

p. 274.

and

Queries, April iS, 1851.

Legends of

the Cross

in
tlic

In 1838, a dark cross was observed for

many

successive niglits in
stars.
Still later

heavens
lia\'e

at

Jerusalem, as
of

if

that part were devoid of

we

two instances

this

phenomenon.

The Reverend
u])iiii

At Jerusalem.

Alfred (iatty, of Kcclesfield, England, published an account of an ap-

pearance

in

the clouds,
in

" of our Saviour

the Cross.

The head
in

was concealed

light,

but the arms were


'

outstretched,
is

England.

and the body was quite distinct."


police of

The

other story

in

Poland.

The
by

Warsaw
that

reported that a fiery cross was seen over one of the

houses
the

in

cit}-,

and a crowd was collected, which was

dispersetl

ci\il

authority.
writer himself

The
clouds
'

was witness to such a natural arrangement


In the

of the

in

the heavens.

autumn

of 1854, while sailing

upon Lake
Cross
in

Champlain, he saw, about sunset, a short distance above the


sun,

the

two delicate white clouds upon a trapezoidal opening Clouds over

Lake Champlain.

of the sky.

The

sides of the blue

opening

in

the clouds

and that

of the cross

were bent

in

the very position which a banner

would assume.

As

the rest of the sky was overshadowed with dense

black clouds, one could easily imagine that in an earlier age this appear-

ance woukl ha\-e been considered miraculous.'

There

is

a curious instance in the life of Colonel

James Gardiner
but for the

which would be unnoticed as a mere dream or


on whose authority

idle fantasy

high standing of the Colonel and the character of his pious biographer,
Dr.

Doddridge,

this

account

is

given.

Colonel

Gardiner

in early life

was

irreligious

impatiently

\\-aiting for

the hour

and profligate. One when he had an appointment with

evening while
a

lady, to pass

away the

time, he carelessly took up a

book
have

entitled Tlie
fallen asleep
firnil)-

Christian Soldier, or

Hcavoi Taken by Storm.

He may
full}-

while reading, but he always asserted that he was

awake, and

believed that what he saw was not a vision of the imagination, but a
reality.

An

unusual effulgence of light falling upon the book that he


raised his eyes to see
if

was reading, he
candle,

an accident had happened to the


air,

when he

beheld, suspended in the

a visible representation of

our Lord upon the Cross surrounded with


audible \-oice or was impressed as
'

glor_\-,

and either heard an


sa\-ing in effect,

if

a voice

had spoken,

London Times, May

23, 1863.
be.iiitiful

Two

otliers

witnessed tins

phenomenon,

the Rev.

James R. Davenport of

New

Vork, and Robert Lowry of

New

Jersey.

112
"

History of the Cross


sinner, did
in a
I

suffer this for tliee,

and are

tliese

the returns

"

He

sank

swoon, to recover, a sincere and hfelong penitent.'


"
Si^if/i

Appearance of the Cross, the

of the Son of

Man

" at the

Day

of Judgment
"

The wood
it

of the Cross

was born with the world,

in tlie terrestrial

paradise;

will

reappear in heaven at the end of time, borne in the arms

of Christ or of his angels,

when

the Lord descends to judge the world at

the
first

last

day."

"

"And

if

the sign of the Cross had such an effect, in the

ages of a stronger faith, to work miracles, overcoming thereby the


of nature,

powers

and the use

of

which has always been accompanied

in

the Ciuirch with the giving of supernatural grace, as in baptism and the
like,

we may

well suppose that this sign visibly displayed in the heavens


its

should, from

exceeding virtue, eclipse the sun and the


'

stars,

whether

these expressions be taken literally or figuratively."


early

The

belief of the

Church

in

the apjiearance of the Cross as the sign of the

coming

of

the Son of Man in the Day of Doom, was almost, if not quite, universal. The Ethiopian Church embodied it in her creed. " What, indeed, "asks a modern divine, " can be more honorable to our Lord and Saviour, or

more

full of

terror to His enemies, than that the

Cross of Christ, which they accounted foolishness, and more than so,

esteemed the greatest reproach

of the Christian faith, should at that


call all
v.,
.

day

be made the herald to proclaim His coming, and to


the world before

nations of

Him?"

(i

Cor.

i.,

21-26:

Wisdom

1-7.)
. .

"

The

salutary

Trophy

of Jesus," saith S. Cyril, "

shall ap-

pear again with Jesus from heaven, for the trophy shall precede the

King; that seeing IPim


S.

tohoin they pierced,

and by the Cross

Cyrir

and mourn; (but they shall mourn


Cross, worshipping the

knowing Him who was dishonored, the Jews may repent tribe by tribe when their season of re-

pentance shall be no more); and that we

may

glory, boasting of the

Lord who was sent and


sent

crucified for us,

and wor-

shipping also

God His Father who


for ever

Him, with the Holy Ghost.

To

whom
shall
'

be glory

and

ever.
is

Amen."

And

again S. Cyril says:

But Christ's own true sign

the Cross; a sign of a luminous Cross

go before the King, plainly declaring


British Cyclopaedia. Art. " Garrliiier."
iJidron, Christ. Icon., vol.
i.,
=

Him who was


Willi.ims,

formerly crucip. 288.

/Mv

Week,

'

p. 369.

'

March, Ser, on

S. Matt, xxiv., 30.

Legends of
ficd
;

the Cross

113

that the Jews,

who

before pierced II ii)i aiul plotted against


tribe by tribe, saying,
'

Him,

when they
put chains.
whither,

see
is

it

may mourn

This

smitten, this

This

He whose face they spat on, this is is He whom of old they crucified, and
we
tlee

He wlio was He on whom they


is

set at

naught;
?

thc_\-

will sa\-, shall

from the face of His wrath

But

the Angel of hosts shall encompass them, so that thc\- shall not be able
to flee anywhere.

The sign of the Cross

shall

be a terror to His foes;

but joy to His friends


suffered for

who have believed in Him, or preached Him, or His sake. Who, then, is that blessed man, who shall be
?

found the friend of Christ

That King, so great and glorious, attended


His

by

trains of angels, the fellow of the I<"athcr's throne will not despise

own

servants.

For

lest

His Elect be confused with His


triDiipet,

foes,

He

shall

send His Angels with a great sound of a


togctlicr

and

tlicy sliall

gatlier

His

elect

from

t lie

how, then,
Father, will

shall

He

despise

He

say to

-winds. He despised not one, even Lot; many righteous Come ye blessed of My them who shall then ride on chariots of clouds,

four

and be collected by angels.' "

'

This, also, was the belief of Origen, Chrysostom, S. Jerome,

Theo-

phylact, Augustine, Bede, and others.

Even the Sibyl sang

lignum fc/ix, in
te

<j

no Jens ipse pcrpoidit

Nee

terra eapit, seJ cadi tecta videHs,

Cum
'S. Cyril, Catcch.
8

renovata
41

Dei faces
xv., 22.

ignita micabis.

Icit., xiii.,

CHAPTER V
THE TRUE CROSS AND
Section
I.

ITS

TRADITIONARY HISTORY
S.

The Discovery

of the Cross by

Helena.

Section 2.

Tra-

ditionary Persons at the Cross

WHATEVER doubt
tliese

may

exist in the

minds

of archs;ologists of

times as to the discovery of the very cross upon wliich


in

our Saviour suffered, there was none


torians of the fourth
cross

the faith with which the his-

and

fifth

centuries recorded the disinterment of a

by the venerable Empress Helena, which was then everywhere

received as the veritable instrument of the Passion of our Lord.

Section

i.

The Discovery

of the Cross by S. Helena.

S.

Helena,

a short time before her


death,
Journey of S. Helena.

which occurred
at

the ad-

vanced age
years,

of

eighty

jourin

neyed to Jerusalem
perhaps we

the year 326, impelled,

may

say,

by

a divinely inspired desire

to

visit

the spot
sacri-

sanctified

by the

fice of the Lamb of God. When she arrived at Mount Calvary, she

found

it

polluted

by a
for

temple of Venus, erected by Hadrian, as


S.
if

Helen.! in Jerusalem.

From

Veldener's T/u- Legendary History of the Cross.

the express purpose of

114

The True Cross


desecrating, or concealing from Christians,
tlie

115
spot to tlicm
tlic

most

sacred

in

the

world.
of

But the very


the

effort

Roman
it

Mmjieror to
oiilivion

cover

with

served to keep alive the


remenibi'anee,
as

the

very decree of the Ephesian

Senate dooming

to forgetfulness the in-

cendiary of their temple,

perpetuated

his

memory.

By

the order of S.

Helena, the idolatrous

temple was destroyed,

and

its

material,

to-

Discovery of the Crosse;,.

ffether

with
soil,

the

sur-

From Vcldener's TIu Legendary History of


In doing this, the

tJie

Cross.

rounding

was remo\-ed.

Holy Sepulchre was


and not
far

disclosed,

from

it

the crosses of

our blessed

Lord and
with
discovered.
variation

of those crucified

him
There
in

were
is

some
in

the accounts of the

manner
cross of

which

the

our Sa\I()UR

was

distinguished, but

not more than might be

expected from various

authors
from

far

removed
and
S.

each

other,
itself.

from the scene


Test of the True Cross.
'Froxa\e\denei's The Lcgemiary History of l/ie Cross.

Ambrose and
ostom
assert
title

S.

Chrys-

that OUT

Lord's

cross

was

identified

by the

which Pontius Pilate caused to

ii6
be affixed to
the
test,
it.

History of the Cross


Rufinus, Socrates, Sozomen, and Theodoret relate, as

the restoration of a sick

woman who was

placed upon each of

_ ,. , lestimonyoi
Early Historians.

the crosses with the earnest prayers of Macarius, Bishop ^ y ^


Qf Jerusalem, that

God would
suffered.

manifest by a miracle the

very

wood upon which His Sox

Paulinus and Sulpicius speak

of the

woman

as being already dead, but that she

was restored to

life

by contact with the holy Cross.


the same argument that
is

In this case

is

it

not allowable to use

employed to

establish the truth of the Gos-

pels, viz., that the diversity of the narratives

only confirms the fact of

the discovery

If

there had been any collusion, the stories would have

been

alike.

The simple

facts that the discovery of three crosses,

one of which was

decided to be that of our

LoRD;

the locality of the

Holy Sepulchre, and

the place of Crucifixion are spoken of by the historians of the fourth

and

fifth

centuries as well known, about which there was no dispute or

in their days, would seem conclusive to all who are willing to confess with Bishop Horsley that they " have an unfashionable partiality

doubt

for

the opinions of antiquity."'


sccpticism of a savaitt
..

But Dr.
of

Robinson, with

the cool
says:

Dr. Robinson's
]ec ions.

the nineteenth century,

The alleged discovery of them [/. c, Golgotha and the Tomb] by the aged and credulous Helena, like the discovery of the Cross, may not, improbably, have been the work of fraud. It would perhaps, not be doing injustice to Bishop Macarius and his clergy, if we
regard the whole as a well laid and successful plan for restoring to Jeru-

salem

its

former consideration, and elevating

his

See to a higher degree

of influence and dignity."" Elsewhere, in \\\& Researches, the Doctor acknowledges that " notwithstanding the silence of Eusebius, there

would seem

to be hardly

any part of history better accredited than the


'

alleged discovery of the true Cross."


It

has been urged that Eusebius,


silent

who

lived in those times,

would not
the his-

have been
Testimony of Eusebius and
Theodoret.

about so important a discovery.

It is true that
i

torian does not in so

many j

precise words speak of the disi

covcry of the Cross, but both he and Theodoret have


recorded the Emperor Constantine's letter to the Bishop

Macarius, on the occasion of the building of the Church of the Resurrec'

Korsley, Biblical Criticism, vol.

ii.,

p.
ii.,

iSi.
p. So.

'

Robinson, Biblical Researches,


ii.
,

vol.

^Ibid., vol.

pp. 15, 16, 76.

The True Cross


tion,

117
Saviour's most Holy Pas'

and

in

that he refers to " the Token of

t lie

sion, buried

beneath the earth of


that
it

many

years."

We
ment

know

was customary among the Jews to bury the


it

instru''

of death,

whatever
in

might have been, with the

sufferer,

but

JksUS was remo\ed

haste, for the

Sabbath was nigh, to

the sepulchre of Joseph of Arimathea, which was a


liewn in the rock, not allowing space for the cross,

tomb
even
if

Burial of the cross.

desired.
full

Again, although these pious souls perhaps hardly recognized the


divinity of our blessed Lord, yet they did not look upon
nal,

Him

as a crimi-

and

at that

moment

tliey

could have viewed the cross with no other

feeling than that of abhorrence, hence the

most probable disposition

of

the " unhappy

tree " must have been in the pit that contained those of

his fellow-sufferers.

That

this

was the

belief of S.

Chrysostom, who,

most
his

likely,

own

represented that of the Church in his day, we learn from words: " For since the wood of the cross was buried, because
it

no one was careful to take


times to be sought

up, inasmuch as fear was pressing,

and the
in after
lie

believers were hurrying to other urgent matters;


for,

and since

it

was

and

it

was

likel\-

that the three crosses

would

together, in order that the


fest

to

all,

first

by

its

LoKu's might not be unknown, it was manilying in the middle, and then by the title, for
'

those of the thieves had no titles."


S.

Cyril,

about

.\.n. 347, in

Bishop of Jerusalem, delivered his Catcciictical Lectures the very " Church of the Resurrection " erected by
In these lectures he refers to the Cross as

Constantine.

existing in his day; ex. gr., "


truly.

He was

crucified for our sins


it,

g cyrirs Testimony,
all

Shouldest thou be disposed to deny

the very place which

can see refutes thee, even this blessed Golgotha, in which, on account of

Him who was


whole world,

crucified
is

on

it.

we

filled

with the

now assembled, and, further, the portions of the wood of the Cross."*
are are the true testimonies concerning

Again he

says, "

Many,

my beloved,
seen

Christ," and
is

among them he
is

enumerates, "

The holy wood


from
this place,

of the Cross

His witness, which

among

us to this day, and

by means

of

those
'

who

ha\'e in faith taken thereof, has,


0/ Consian/ine,
lib.
i.,

now almost

F'usebius, Lt'/c

b.

iii.,

c.

Gretser,

De

Crtice,

cap. 37.

50: Theodoret, Eccles. Hist., b. i., c. 17. Smith. McClintock, and Strong, in their Encyclo-

pedias say the cross was

burned, and refer to Otho's Lex. Rab. as authority, but


it

we have

preferred the opinion of the Fathers, that


'

was buried.
*

S.

Chrysostom on

S.

John, Horn., Ixxxv.

S. Cyril, Catech.

Led.,

iv., 10.

ii8
filled

History of the Cross


the whole world."'

Again, speaking against the Docetae, who denied the reality of Christ's Passion, he says, " Jesus then really suffered for
all

men

for the

Cross was no illusion

for,

though

should

now deny it, this Golgotha assembled the wood of the Cross
;

confutes me, near which

we

are now-

confutes me, which has from thence


'

been distributed piecemeal to


It is

all

the world."

not marvellous that

wood should remain underground

for the

space of three hundred years without decay.


The Preservation
oftheCross under Ground
not Necessarily a Miracle.

Many
who

instances could be
ex. gr.,

adduced of wood being preserved for as long a time,


the coffin of Bishop Coverdale,
,

died in 1569 (or 1580,


,.
.

accorduig to some accouuts), has been disinterred within the


j^^^ ^^^^^ years,

haviug remained undecayed

in

the ground for

about as

many

years as did the crosses; and this in the


in

damp

soil of

England, so that
a

the drier earth of Palestine the

mere preservation

of

beam

of

oak involves no miracle.^


cross, or rather that three crosses

That a

were found,
w^as
?

is

settled be-

yond reasonable
Summary
of

dispute.

The question
testinion\-.

is,

one of them that on

which our blcsscd Lord suffered

We

have the following


of

Proof as to
r inding the

summary
-

of

The instrument

torture and

Three Crosses,

death was,

among
it

thc Jews, usually buried with the sufferer.

Crosses were found where


crucified with

was well known that Christ and the two

true Cross, that

Him were executed. As to the miracle identifying the may be exaggerated. Wonderful events, told by distant
became
distorted.

historians, naturally

But the historians who record


is

the discovery of the Cross agree in the main fact, and their testimony received as truthful and credible in other matters.

Have we
cross,

a right to

doubt, then, in this

It

must be concluded that the

claimed as

the true Cross, was that upon which our Saviour died, or that a gross
fraud was perpetrated by Bishop Macarius and his clergy.
Dr. Robin-

son insinuates the


'

latter,

although professing to wish " no injustice done


tlie letter

S. Cyril, Catech. Led., x., 19.

Ibid., xiii., 4.
is

The
is

authenticity of
it,

of S. Cyril to Constantine has

been doubted.

There

proof enough without

yet as a matter of interest


is

the passage in which the dis-

covery of the Cross

referred to

quoted.

"In

the time of thy father, the divinely favof the Cross

ored Constantine of blessed memory, the salutary

wood

was found

in

Jerusalem.

Divine grace granting the discovery of the hidden holy places to one
religious objects."
'

who

laudably pursued

spring lock which apparently had belonged to the Crusaders was dug up a few years ago
still

at Jerusalem, years.

in

working order, although

it

had been under ground four or

five

hundred

Williams, Holy City.

The True Cross


to tlicm."
sides,

119
Re-

But their characters have ever stood above suspicion.


is

which

the more probable: a well-sustained, successful fraud, or


relic, in

the simple discovery of a

the very place pointed out by tradition,


?'

which was oidy three luuulred years old

at

The opinion of the Church least be commemoris

that the pious search of S. Helena should

ated
'^

shown by the apThe Festival of the Invention " of the Cross


Appointed by the Church.

pointment
of the Festival
(if

the

Invention
of the Cross

(May

3di

by the Greek, Roman,

and Anglican branches, and the


tained
latter

also reat

the

festival

the time of the

refor-

mation

of the calendar,

when

she

struck

out

many

holy days as saHelena Deposits a Portion of the Cross in Jerusalem. Veldener's The Legendary History of the Cross.
in a case of silver,
'
;

voring of superstition.

The Cross was


cipal parts, of

di-

S.

From

vided into three prin-

which one, enclosed

was committed

to the care of the Bishop of Jeru.salem

another part was sent to Rome,

where

it

is

preserved under the

dome
title

of S. Peter's.

This

must not be confounded with the


in

which

is

at S.

Croce

Disposition of ""= cross,

Gerusalemme

at

Rome.
"
.

The

third fragment

was sent

to Constan-

tinople.
'

memory

As Bishop Oilenheimer of Plymouth Rock

asks,
.
.

Is there

and preserves

no Puritan tradition which jealously embalms the to this day the site where the so-called Pil' '

grim Fathers landed ? " Jerusalem and iti Sacred Localities, p. 206. Bishop Wainwright when visiting these sacred localities, " since faith

For

my own

part," said

is

a higher principle than

doubt, I look upon the believer even in the impossible with greater reverence, than upon the unhappy universal skeptic." Pathways oj Our Lord, p. 104. For a full examination of sacred
localities,

see Williams, Holy City.


tlie ]iortion

For a defence of the discovery of the Cross, Newman's


this

Introduction to
''

translated of Fleury's Ecclesiastical History.

guardian was appointed over

fragment of the Cross, as

we

learn from the mention

of Porphyrins,

ordained Bishop of Gaza about a.d. 395, that he had been the Slaiirophulox, or custodian, of the holy Cross. Fleury., Eccles. Hist., b. xxi., S. Lord Mahon, while

who was

I20

History of the Cross


often appears in the pages of history.

The Jerusalem fragment

In
de-

A.D. 614, Jerusalem was invaded


Jerusalem

by Chosroes, King
-^

of Persia,

who
The

stroyed the churches erected by S. Helena, and carried to J


j^jg q^^j-^

Fragment.

country

tlie

portion of the holy Cross.

Pa-

triarch of Jerusalem, Zacharias,

accompanied by the sacred


remained

relic,
it

and the

wife of Chosroes,
cration.

who was

a Christian, carefully preserved


it

from dese-

For fourteen years


Constantinople.

in the

keeping of the Persians,

when they were conquered by


holy
relic to

lem, and on the fourteenth of


calendars of the
Festival of

the Emperor Hcraclius, \\\\o carried the The next year it was restored to JerusaSeptember, a day commemorated in the

Church

as that of the " Exaltation of the Cross,"

Heraclius, having disrobed himself of his royal apparel and . rr

Exaltation of the Cross.

put

Oil

mean garments, entered


.

the holy city with bared


1

head and

feet,

carrying upon his shoulder a portion of that In

burden which he believed was once borne by our SAVIOUR Himself.


the sacred treasure to Constantinople.
back, or a portion of
is
it

A.D. 635 or 636, Heraclius was driven from Jerusalem, and reconveyed

Either

it

soon found

its

way
it

must

liave

been preserved But


little

in

the holy city, for


until

often mentioned in history.

of note occurred

the

battle of Tiberias, July 3


hill as

and

4, 1187,

when

the Cross was placed on a

a rallying-point for the broken squadrons.

Long and

bitter

was

the contest, for the Christians fought for the altar of their Sacrifice, but the heathen were victorious, and " what was most lamented," saith

Matthew
sins

Paris,

" the Cross which freed


'

men from
its
it

the captivity of their

was taken by Saladin."

Frederick Barbarossa endeavored to obtain


wily conqueror, aware of the \'alue set upon

restitution, but the

b\'

the Christians, de-

manded,

as

its

ransom, the

cities of
;

Tyre, Antioch, and Tripoli, then in


if

the possession of the Crusaders

promising also that

these were given

up, he would restore the sacred wood, and permit pilgrims to visit Jeru-

salem.

These conditions probably were not accepted,

for, in

12 18,

we
to

find the Sultan, Malik-el-Camel, proposing, in order to save

Damietta

the key of his kingdom, to deliver up Jerusalem, to advance


apparently doubting the genuineness of the
relic,

money

admits

its

preservation

" From

this period,

however, the history of


88 1.
'

this

fragment of wood
p. 263.
;

may

be clearly and accurately traced during the


10,

twelve succeeding centuries."


1

Essay read before the Royal Society of Antiquarians, Feb.


,

Bagley, Graphic Illustrator


Fuller,

Holy War, bookii., chap. 45

Vertot, Hist,

of tAe

A'liiffhts

of Malta,

vol.

i.,

p. 177.

The True Cross


rebuild
its walls,

121

and to give up the true Cross.

Two

years later, the

Christians being conquered by the Saracens, were obliged to quit Dami-

and to deliver to their foes their slaves and prisoners at Acre and The Saracens on liieir part agreed to give up their captives of Tyre.
etta,

Cairo and Damascus, to conduct the army to a place of safety, and to " Everything was e.xecuted on both sides," says restore the true Cross.

Vertot, " except the restitution of the true Cross, which the infidels in
all

])robability
in

had

lost."

'

Vet

it

has been claimed that

it

was restored

ami placed

the hands of the Knights Templar, and preserved by

them

until their dissolution

by Philip the
"

Fair.

In the

Manual
it

of York, 1509,

however, there

is

a prayer which would intimate that

had not been

rescued from the paynim.


the holy Crosse that
it

We shall make special God was done upon, that God

prayer
for

...

for

His merci bringe

out of the hethen mennes handes into Cristen mennes kepynge.

The fragment
that

of the Cross sent to Constantinople


S.

is

said to have

been

which was transferred to


;

Louis of France
it

in

A.D. 1241
into

by Bald-

win the Second

ostensibly for fear lest

should

fall

the liands of the Saracens, but more probably as a pledge


for

Constantinople Fragment sent


to Paris.

means

to carry on the Crusade.


of

Its arrival in Paris

is

commemorated on the seventh


tion of the Cross."
S.

August,

as the Feast of the " Susceprelic,


, Festival of
,

Louis deposited the sacred


in

which he met with due reverence,


Stephen
crated
at

the Church of S.

Susception of the Cross.

Sens

until a chapel could be erected


in

and consefasted three

by the Pope's legate


example
of

Paris.

The King, having


and with bare

days, imitated the


his

of Heraclius,

feet

and head,

garments ungirt and

mean

material, bore the precious


it,

wood

to its

shrine.
set
in

This same fragment, or a portion of


gold, and he himself

S.

Louis caused to be

showed

it

publicly at solemn festivals and

holy days to the people.'


'

This custom was continued by his successors.

Vertot, Hist. Knii;hts of Malta, vol. i., pp. 267, 26g. In ttie tre.-ity of .A.cre the Saracens had promised to return the true Cross, and gave hostages for the fulfilment of this agreement. After some delay, the condition not having been performed, Richard I. threatened to cut oft the Saladin anticipated him by sacrificing the Christians in his heads of the pagans in his hands. possession. The King kept his word, the captives were beheaded in the sight of Saladin's army. The bodies were disembowelled, and it is added that much silver and gold were found
in the entrails.
//(ii'ci/c'K,
ii.
,

The
p.

gall

obtained from the victims was used for medical purposes.


is

Riley's

220.

However, there

a piece of the Cross

still

preserved at Jerusalem.

Curzon, Monasteries of the Levant, chap. xiii. ' .According to Favine, S. Louis, on Good Friday, 1241, caused the portion of the Cross to be brought into the Abbatial church of " S. Anthonee des camps lez Paris, at the entrance

122

History of the Cross


historical incident

A curious

connected with this appears

in

the Acts of

the English Parliament in 1423, whereby the


of France, for his

Duke

of Bedford,

Regent
his title

to France),

nephew. Henry VI. of and " representing his person;

England (challenging
shall

the true Cross to the people, as the kings of


to do."
relic
it
'

show on Good Friday, France used the same day


had subsided, restored

During the French Revolution a pious person concealed the

and,
its

when the storm


of the Cross sent

of licentious infidelity

to

former shrine.

A part
in

by the Empress Helena


S. Peter's.

to

Rome
The

is

enshrined

the place of honor under the dome of

history of the

Roman
Fragment.

morc important
^^
^j^^

part, the greater portion of that


title

claimed to

identical
in the

placed by Pontius Pilate over our

Lord, will be given

succeeding chapter.

Sixtus V. enclosed a

frafTment in the cross which surmounts the obelisk in the Piazza of S.


Peter's.

From
S. Cyril's

the numerous fragments of which

words were to be taken


and we
is

literally,

we read, it would seem as if and " that the world was filled
become famous,

with pieces of the Cross."

Some, true
will

or false, have

owing

to association,

note a few of the most celebrated.


it

The

Palatine cross

so called because

was bequeathed by the PrinS.

cess Palatine,
Palatine Cross.

Anna
.

Gonzaga, to the monks of


it
,

Germain

in Paris.

The
j and

Princess had received

which

,-.111been had country


it

from John Casimir, King of Poland,


j preserved r for

many

years,

was believed
emperors.

to be genuine.

It liad
its

been a

gift

from one of the Greek

The

story

is

told that

sanctity was tested

by having been

preserved intact in a
melted.

fire

so intense that the glass and gold setting were

When

the

tomb

of

Charlemagne was opened, the Emperor was

dis-

garet of Provence his wife, and his three brethren


lates, Princes

whereof was prepared a theatre, whereon the King, the Queens, Bl.mche his mother, and Marmounted the Archbishops, Bishops, Pre;

and great

lords,

and an

infinite

number

of the

people assisted in the ceremonie."


;

thence the Cross was carried to Notre- Dame liy the King one of his brothers bearing the crown of thorns, which had been previously pledged by Baldwin. This same piece of the Cross had been pawned by the sons of John De Brenne to the Venetians for one hundred and fifty Theatre of pounds of silver. Charles VII. exhibited the relic on Wednesday, Nov. 13, 1457. Honour, vol. i., p. 151. The relic is now preserved in the Sainte Chapelle some say it was secretly sold by Henry III. to the Venetians, yet Lord Mahon considers this false, but says the Mahon, Essay on the True Cross, read Paris fragment disappeared on the 20th of May, 1575.

From

at the Roy.al Society of Antiquaries,


'

February,
i.,

1834..

Favine, Theatre 0/

Honour

vol.

p. 153.

The True Cross


covered sitting on a golden throne, and vested
in

123
his imperial

robes.
his

The double crown


pilijrim's wallet
'

of France

and Germany was on and


his good ^

his fleshless
yoveiisi'.

was by ^

his side,

sword

with which, according to the

monks
a

of S. l)cnis, the might)'

-A
a

biow;

Fragment

from the xomb of Charlemagne.

monarch once clove asunder


armor.
1

knight

ckul

in

comjjlete

lis

feet rested

upon the buckler

of gold given

him by Pope
of

Leo

III.,

and from
wiiich

his

neck was suspended by a massive chain of gold


rendered him victorious,
jiart

the talisman

he believed

the true Cross, the gift of the lunpiess Irene, enclosed in an emerald.
In iSii. this in\'.duable relic

was presented by the burghers of Aix-lait

Chapelle to Napoleon; he wore


Austerlitz anil

upon

his

breast in

the battles of

Wagram,
it

after the exam])le of his illustrious predecessor,


it.

who

for

nine years never entered into battle without


to

Bonaparte
it

afterwards gave
absent.' In

Queen Hortense, from whose bosom


is

was never

the Cathedral of Seville a piece of the Cross

preserved.

Its

genuineness was tested by Archbishop Alonzo de Fonseca, wdio placed


it

on a brazier of burning coals where


of

it

remained during
Piece
in

Spain.

the performance

mass;

it

filled

the church with fragrance,


fact,

and was unscathed.

The

pious prelate records the

but forgets to

mention the nature of the wood.


Great Britain very early received portions of the sacred
relic.

In the

Anglo-Saxon

Clironiclc

it

is

recorded that

iii

a.d. 883, Alfred the Great


II., of
is

received a fragment from the Pope, Martin

Rome.
In Great Britain.

After the time of the Crusades frequent mention


the wills of the devout, of pieces
friends.
left as

made

in

pious legacies to churches or


a portion
for a

Henry VII. thus solemnly bequeaths


Malmesbur_v Abbey

which he says

was brought from Greece.


a fragment

long time treasured


it

which

it

recei\,'ed

from Athelstan, to

whom

was presented
" S.

by Hugh

of France.
details the history of the Cross at
it

Capgrave thus

Bromshold.

Helena having found the Crosse, did divide

in

nine parts according to

the nine orders of angels; of one part thereof which was most sprinkled

with Christ's blood, his hands and feet being thereto nailed, she made a
little crosse,

which she enclosed


and Jewels,
p. 272.

in a

box

of gold beset with precious

'

Barrera. Gfrns

Alonzo Morgado, llistoria de

Sevilla, 1587, p. I02.

124
stones and gave
it

History of the Cross


to her sonne Constantine.
until
it

It

went successively from

one Emperor to anotlier

came

to Baldwin.

...
:

So long

as

hee carried this crosse with him to bataile hee had ever upper hand of
his enemies, but fogetting
it,

hee was forthwith

slain

upon which

his

chaplaine

Hugh

stole secretly

away with the

said

boxe and Crosse, and

came

to this monastery of

Bromholm.

...
if

By

the virtue of this

holy crosse,

co-oper ante Domino, thirty and nine persons were raised from

death to

life,

and nineteen which were blind received their sight; besides


it

many
II.

other miracles which


is

wrought,

you believe

my

author."

'

Ireland

enriched with several fragments of the true Cross.


in
1 1

Paschal
lo.

presented one to Murtogh, one of the Kings of Ireland,

In

honor of the
cian

gift,

the grateful sovereign built the Cister-

Abbey
is

another piece to
in 1380.

Holy Cross near Thurles, Barry Oge gave the abbey belonging to the same Order in Tracton,
of

third

preserved near Dublin, and

in

the contest between


it

the competitors for the priory of

Kelmainham
privileges

in 1482,

is

related that
of the

one party had been deprived

of its

by the grand Master

Order for pawning a piece

of the true Cross." for portions of the precious relic increased of the

Very soon the demand


beyond the natural
iw, r Multiphcation of the Fragments,

ability

Cross to supply
to
it.

it.

Supernatural

power was attributed


Jr

"

The

crosse," writes Riba-

dencira,"

who

fathcrs,

probably unjustly, his words upon


sense or feeling, yet seemeth
tliat

Paulinus, " being a piece of


to have in
it
it
a:

wood without

living

and everlasting virtue; and from

time to

this,

permitted

itself to

be parted and divided to comply with innumerable

persons, and yet suffereth

no

loss or

detriment."

Marvellous indeed
of

must have been the increase to supply the centuries


less

demand, but no

marvellous than the miracle that

many

of the fragments are of dif-

ferent species of

wood, yet that may be

in part

accounted for by admitting

that the Cross

was composed
if

of divers kinds.

Two hundred

years ago,

Erasmus declared that"


enough would be found
Swift, too,
'

the fragments of the Cross were collected,

for the building of a ship,


' '

and yet our Lord

carried the whole in his Cross.

'

Voltaire also sneers in similar language


sacrificed to his reverence, says that

whose wit was never

says,

Piers riovvman Capgrave, Life of King Edmund, quoted in Weaver's Funeral Monmncnts. "But vventen to Walsingham, and my wife Alls and byd the Roode of Bronholme bring
^

me

out of dette,"
'^

Flos Sanctorum, p. 317.

Mant, Hist, of the Church in Ireland,

vol.

i.,

p. 70.

Dialogue on Pilgrimages.

The True Cross


Lord Peter " was
telling of

125

an old Sign Post that belonged to his Father,


it

with nails and timber enough on

to build sixteen large

men

of war."

'

Cahin admits

that

it is

considered as a certain fact that S. Helena did

discover the true Cross, yet he lliinks the search was one of foolish
curiosity, and, as to the iniuunerablc relics

now claimed

to be parts ot

it,

he says,

" the Gospel testifies that the Cross could be borne by one

single individual;

how

display more

relics of

such statements Dr.

glaring, then, is the audacity now to pretend to To wood than three hundred men could carry " " Large crosses of wood, upon Rock answers:
!
''

which short thread-like chips fmni the true Cross were glued, have been
at times mistaken

by the heedless

traveller, or

shamelessly passed

off

by

exaggerating and boastful sacristans, for so


Cross itself."

many

portions of the true

Hence the above

slur,

but " the thin, almost indiscernible

parings from the true Cross


scale,

itself, all, if
^

brought together and put into a

would not weigh many ounces."


thus quaintly writes on
^-Esop's cock

Fuller

this subject:

"And

though some

know no more than


for the

how

to prize these pearls, let


jewellers.
. . .

them

learn the true value of

them from the Roman

As

common

exception against the Crosse, that so

many

several

pieces thereof are shown, which put together would break the back of

Simon Cyrene
dividing.
clear

to bear them,

it

is

answered, Distraliitur,
it

iioii

diininuitiir,
in

and, like the loaves in the Gospel,


If all

is

miraculously multiplied
all

the

these

fail,

Baronius hath a razour shaveth

scru[)le

away: For,

saith he, Oiiicqiiid sit fiihs

purgat facinus

so he that

worshipeth the
in

false relics of a true saint,

God

taketh his good intention


for the

good worth, though he adore the hand

of Esau,

hand

of

Jacob."
Before dismissing this part of our subject,
it

is

well to quote the

opinion of one of the most pleasant and learned, yet irreverent, of


arch.Teologists.

Speaking of the

relics

shown
one
is

as of the true Cross, he

says: "

Of the three
in

principal pieces,

now, or lately was, at

Etchmiazin
it

Armenia, the monks of which are accused of having stolen


hands of the

from the Latins of Jerusalem when they were imprisoned by Sultan

Suleiman.
'

The second
iv.

piece

is

still

at Jerusalem, in the

Talf of a Tub, sec.

''

Calvin, Treatise on Relics, p. 233.

^
''

Rock, Chureh of Our Fathers, vol. ii., pp. 179, 280, note. Fuller, Historie of the Holy IVarre, book iii., chap. 12.

126

History of the Cross


tlie

Greeks; and the third was sent by

Empress Helena
at

herself to the
is

Church
little

of

Santa Croce

in

Gerusalemme

Rome.

There

indeed
is
I

reason to doubt that the piece of

wood

exhibited at

Rome

the

same that the Empress sent there


remark that
are of the
all

in the

year 326.

...

may
Cross

the very ancient specimens of the

relics of the true

same wood, which has a very peculiar

half petrified appear-

ance."

'

Those who have investigated the subject most


unite in one testimony, that but
little is

fully in

our day,

all

to be found at present through-

out Christendom claiming to be the


that " there are very few fragments
of the holy Cross.

original

wood.

Dr. William C.

Prime, in his interesting monograph on this subject," emphatically states

anywhere which profess


idea that

to be relics
is

The common

enough wood

shown
is

in

various places as relics

of the true Cross to build a dozen crosses

a a
of

very foolish error, invented by some one

who imagined
it

that

when

church claimed to possess a piece of the true Cross,


at least

must be a piece

some

feet in length

and

solid contents.
'

Generally speaking, that

very rare and highly prized

relic,

a piece of the true Cross,' whether


is

possessed by a church, a crowned head, or a private individual,

minute speck on an ivory


fragment
is

of w^ood, scarcely visible to the


tablet,

naked eye,

set

sometimes

always enclosed

in

a costly rcliqtiairc.

No
is

other

known

so large as the Santa Croce tablet, which

not ten

inches long by seven wide.

There are but very few fragments known


Leaving out the
gathered into one

which are large enough to be called pieces of wood.


Santa Croce tablet,
that
I

all

the relics of the holy Cross, claimed to be such,


of in all the world,
if

have been able to hear

piece;

would not make another block


tablet.

of

wood

as large as the

Santa

Croce

This tablet

is

not generally spoken of as a part of the

Cross itself."

Section

2.

Traditionary Persons at the Cross. The tradition-

ary history of the Cross and Crucifixion would be incomplete without

mention of the persons

whom

love and faith, although beclouded, have

grouped around the


they are so well
'

altar of Calvary.

brief

account

will suffice, as

known by

their representations in art.

'

Curzon, Monasteries of tJie Levant, chap. xiii. Holy Cross, a History of the Invention, Preservation, and Disappearance of the
as the

Wood

Known

True

Cross, pp. 59, 60.

The True Cross


S.

127

W-ronica

may

claim precedence, as bting honored by a shrine at


PctL-r's at

the

ri<,rht

hand

of the high altar of S.


this

Rome.

Tb.crc are
S. Veronica.

various

versions of

legend.

According to one, our


His Cross, when,
face,

Saviour was passing her door, bearing


touchctl with compassion,
slic

wiped the drops of agony from His

and the features of

our Lord were imprinted upon the cloth or sudarium.

Hence
ferred

the

name
in

vera icon, or true

y'
^1

image, which
to
say,

time was trans-

the

woman

herself.

Some

however, that she was

Bernice, or Veronica, the niece of

Herod, being daughter of Salome,


his sister,

who was suddenly


Being sent
for

con-

verted at the sight of the sufferingSaviour.

by Ti-

berius to heal

him

of his sickness,

she went to
ever,
finall)-

Rome,

too late, how-

to save the
suffered

Emperor, and

martyrdom under
ac-

Nero.

According to another

count she came to Europe with

Lazarus and Mary Magdalene, and


sealed her faith with her blood in
;ik.

u^).jiut-^

Pro\'ence or Acquitaine.
ica
is

Veronearl}- pic-

S. Veronica's

rarely absent

from

Napkin, at S. Peter's, Rome. From Harper's Magazine.

tures of the Crucifixion.


Veronica.

She

also appears in the

Coventry Mysteries.

ze synful pepyl,

why

fare thus

?
!

ffor

swet and blod he


!

may

not se

Alias

holy prophete, Cryst Jhesus


is

Careful

myn

hert for the

And she
y^/iesus.

7i.<hypyth his

face with her

kercliy.

Veronica, the whipyng doth

me

ese

My
I xal

face

is

clene that was blak to se

them kepe from alle mysese. That token on thi kerchy and reniei-i-ibyr me

'
!

There is another version which removes Veronica from the scene was the woman that was healed by touching Christ's robe. Desiring a
'

o the Crucifixion.

She

portrait of

Him,

-S.

Luke

128

History of the Cross


at the

Longinus was the centurion who,

command

of Pilate, pierced

the side of our Lord with a lance, and,


S.

moved by
i

the eclipse of the sun

and the earthquake, believed in Christ.


Longinus.

Through
r

disease

or age he

was purblind, but the blood


his eyes

,.

of Christ

/-i

streaming

from the spear accidently touched

and

his sight

was restored.

Renouncing

his profession,

he was taught by the Apostles and dwelt in

Caesarea twenty-eight years, converting

many by
his

his

words and example.

Then the governor commanded him


refusal ordered his teeth to be

to sacrifice to idols,

and on

his

drawn and
" Behold

tongue to be cut out.

But

Longinus did not


in

lose the

power

of speech,
if

and seizing an axe he dashed


these
are

pieces

the idols, saying,

God."

Then the

demons, coming out of the idols, entered into the governor and his
friends,

who, becoming insane,

fell

headlong

at the feet of the saint.


in

Longinus demanded
our abode."
ness had

of the devils
is

why

they dwelt

the idols.

They
is

answered, " Wherever Christ

not named, or his sign placed, there

Then Longinus said unto the governor, on whom blindfallen, "It is impossible that thou shouldst be healed unless thou first slay me, when I will pray and thou shalt receive health Then the governor ordered that he should be of mind and body."

now

beheaded, but immediately after cast himself upon the body, weeping
tears of penitence.

And

instantly his health of

mind and body were


received

restored,

and he ended
is

his life in

good works.'
is

Such
in

the story of

the Golden Legend, and that which

the

Romish Church.
the
miracles

But there

is

a sad confusion of the soldier

who

pierced our Saviour's side after his death, with the centurion, who, at
sight of

" Truly this

when Jesus " gave up the ghost," confessed, was the Son of God," and, therefore, since then has been
first

honored as the "

fruits of the Gentiles."

Like Veronica's, the

altar of S.

Longinus

is

one of the four under the


suit

dome

of S. Peter's, and, like his


But

name, has evidently been made to


Christ said unto her, " Unless
sent me."
I

thrice painted

it.

all

were unlike.
is

Then
to

aid you, Luke's


at

art is in vain, for

my

face

only

known

Him who

Afterwards being

her house

and returned her the napkin with the portrait, which works miracles. At length the Roman Emperor sends for it. Some say it was Tiberius afflicted with worms in his head others that it was Vespasian with a wasp's nest in his nose. At the sight of
for water to

He asked

wash His

face,

the

sudarium the Emperor


is

is

healed.
;

In gratitude, and to revenge the death of Jesus, Jerusafinding the four soldiers

lem

destroyed by the

Romans

who

who

divided the robe of our

Lord, cut them in four pieces, and the others who took part in His death were sold for thirty Aiirea Legenda. pence. //;\r/. of Our Lor,!, vol. i., p. 41.
'

The True Cross


the event, being derived finm longhe (Xoyxtf), a spear.
It

129
appears
is

in

Syriac

MS.

of the eleventh centurj-, although the legend

much mure

ancient.

Stephaton, or Calpurmut, presented the sponge, sometimes changed


for a cup,

to our Lord.

In early form, Stephaton carries a vessel of


histor\'
is

vinegar.
in

As Lady

Lastlake says, " his

has been
stephaton.

no way preserved or imagined," which


in

rather strange

considering his frequent presence

painting and illuminations.


interest than his represented

Nicodenius

we

regard with

more

com-

panions, as having a
in

more

real itlentity.

To him

is

usually,

and always

(Ireek art, assigned the task of drawing the nails which fastened our
cross,

Lord to the
'hile

S.
Nicodemus.

John conceals these that the

mother

may

be

spared the sight of


the instruments of
torture
In

and death.
art

Italian

he

often

supports the
of Christ in the

body

descent from the


cross; with of

Joseph

Arimathea he
it

bears

to the

tomb

and afterwards prepares spices for em-

balmment.
Joseph of Arimathea usually assists

Nicodemus Joseph of
in

ih-awing'"'''"^"'"nails
1

the
1,

from the
1

hands, and

sus-

The Descent from

the Cross.

yom]3.meioris Histotv of Our Lord, ^ '


in its

taining the upper part of the

body both

descent from the Cross

and

in

bearing

it

to the sepulchre.

The

position of honor was probably

130

History of the Cross

given to him because he had the courage to beg the body of Jesus from
Pilate.

All these characters, except Stephaton, are given by

name

in

the

Coventry

J/j'stcfirs.

Lastly, appears Ahasuerus, who, according to the legend, drove

away

our Lord from his door-post as

He

leaned against

it

for support

on His

way to Calvary. Matthew Paris says that, in 1228, an Wandering Jew. ^ Armenian archbishop visited the monastery of S. Albans, England, and asserted that he had known the man. That he had been Pilate's door-keeper, by name Cartaphilus, who, when they were dragging Jesus from the Judgment Hall, struck Him, bidding him " Go
faster."

Upon which
come."

Jesus replied, "


after,

indeed

am

going, but thou shalt

tarry

till I

Soon

being converted, he was baptized by the

name

of Joseph.

At the end

of every

hundred years he

falls

into a

fit

or

ecstasy, out of

which he recovers and returns to the same age, thirty


suffered.

years, that he

was when Jesus

He

is

a very devout person,

remembers
composing
history; he

all

the circumstances of Christ's death and resurrection, the

of the
is

Creed by the Apostles, etc'

It

is

idle to follow his

only referred to because that " inspired Dutchman," as


calls

Mrs. Jameson
his etchings.

Rembrandt, has seen

fit

to introduce

him

into

one of

Nothing can be added to the simple majesty


corded
T1 ne 1 wo Thieves.

of faith

and despair,

re-

in

the narrative of the Evangelists, of

tlie

penitent and the im-

_.

penitent thief. i^
qJ
|-|^g Qj-^g^

Early art has represented not only the face i

beaming with love and

trust turned

towards the

Saviour, and that of the other distorted with hate and malignity and

averted from him, but has also depicted holy and evil angels receiving

the souls of each.

According to an old legend, the good

thief rescued the

Holy Family,

which had
"

with a band of robbers, on the way to Egypt. Mary saw the kindness which the robber did show them, she said unto him, The Lord God will receive thee to his right hand and grant thee pardon of th\' sins.' Then the Lord Jesus answered
fallen
in

When

the

Lady

S.

'

and said to

his mother,

'

When

thirty years are expired,

Mother, the

Jews

will crucify

me

at

Jerusalem; and these two thieves shall be with


cross.

me

at the

same time upon the


'

Titus on
iii.,

my
p. 192.

right hand,

and

Brand, Antiquities (Knight's ed.), vol.

The True Cross


Duniachas on
Paradise.

131

my

left,

and from that time Titus

sliall

go before

me

into

"
"

'

The

spot where the

Holy Family met the robbers

is still

pointed out,

near Ramla, and in the time of the Crusades was visited as a pious act
of pilgrimage.

In the

Academy

of Florence there

is

a fresco represent-

ing the scene."

These men are known by other names than those

just given.

S.

Xavier, in his History of Christ, calls one Vieimus, and the other Justinus.

The Roman martyrology, and


calls

late

tradition,

following the

Gospel of Nicodemus,

the good thief {Sanctiis Latro) Dismas,


legend,

and the other,

Gestas.^

According to that apocryphal

the

penitent robber presents himself " a miserable figure, carrying the sign
of the Cross

upon

his

shoulders " at the gate of Paradise, and the


first

guardian angels admitted him

into the regions of the blessed.*

The

even hand of justice


criminal

Paradise on earth, was lost through a thief, a like


S.

must

first

enter the Heavenly.'

Jerome awards the penitent

the palm of martyrdom, and S. Bonaventura, rightly defining a martyr " a right will and a right cause " as dependent upon two conditions

declares the
thief,

first

was wanting

in

the Innocents, the second in the

good

but that Christ supplied the deficiency in each."


that " there
is

Lady Eastlake says


fi.xion of

some reason

to believe that the

crucifixion of the thieves preceded, in art, the cruci-

our Lord," and gives an example of Jesus


apparently
free,

standing,

between the robbers

bound
ably

to posts; but b\ the eleventh centur}', probearlier,

much

could dates be determined, the


In a Svriac

three crosses appear.

MS.

in

the Laur-

^^'"'^ i<'^-prentation of the

Crucifixion with Thieves.

entian Library at Florence the thieves are nailed Vzom


to their crosses, but, usually, they are represented
as onl\' tied, not nailed to the cross.
^

]&mes,on's His/ory

0/

Our

Lord.

The same
''

authoress also quotes the

Gospel of the IIIfainy, chap. viii. Legends of the Madonna, p. 234. ^Favine gives a charm which being written upon parchment, and bruised with wine in a mortar, will make criminals condemned to death insensible to pain. He adds, " I never knew

any who made proof

of it."

" Iinparibits

nieritis

pendent

trio corpora

JJisinas et Gestas, in medio sedit

ramis ima potestas


levatur."
FTonoitr, vol.
ii.,

Geslas damnatus,

Dismas ad asira

Tkeatre of

p. 247.

*
'

Gospel of iVicodem lis, chap. xx.


S. Cyril, Catec. Lect., xiii., 3.

^History of Our Lord,

vol.

ii.,

p.

166.

132

History of the Cross


Dismas was owing to the shadow
pierced.'
is

traditions, that tlie conversion of

of our

Lord falling upon him, and that he was baptized by the water which
flowed from our Saviour's side

when
left

This presumes that the

good

thief

was placed upon the

right side, as

usually represented in art,

but some would place him on the

because Jacob so crossed his hands


S.

when he

blessed the children of Joseph."

Anselm, by a
those

figure

which

does not seem

clear, says, the right thief figured

who

suffered for
for charity.'

justice, the left, those

who were pseudo-martyrs, who suffered


upon which the good

A cross,
is

said to be that

thief expiated his crimes,

preserved in the city of Nicosia in the island of Cyprus; some authorities


is

state that a part

in

the Church of S. Croce in

Gerusalemme
this part of

at

Rome.*

There

is

a curious incident

connected with
in

our subject.

In the sixteenth century there lived


Brandanothe

Sienna a

man named Brandano.


in

Being choscn to perform the part of the penitent thief

the miracle play in the Easter celebration, while suspended

on the

cross, the

remembrance

of

his past

life,

which had been bad,

moved him

to repentance.

He underwent

a severe penance for several

years, at the

end of which he began to preach to the inhabitants of

the Florentines.

Sienna, prophesying and denouncing in the streets the Siennese and Hence he was called the " Fool of Christ." Among

other vaticinations he foretold the taking of

Rome by

Charles V.

The

papal

courts

being

wearied
in

with

his

denunciations,

Clement

VH.

ordered him to be tied

a sack and thrown into the Tiber.

Disengag-

ing himself he met the Pope,

who was

visiting

some

of the churches.

Clement was affrighted


prophecy, "

at the

apparition of one

whom
more

he supposed
terrified at his
'

either dead, or miraculously delivered,

and was

still

You have put me

in a sack,

and God

will sack

you."

When

the sacking of

Rome

did occur, the words of this

madman were
Rome,

remembered. day
'

On

the same night on which Pope Clement died in


streets of

Brandano ran about the

Sienna proclaiming the fact; the next

his prophetic ravings


For
fuller accounts see

were confirmed."
Madonna ; and
Hist,

Mrs. Jameson's Legends of the


lib. iv.,

of Our Lord.
^

vol,

ii.,
-

p. i66.

Molanus, Hist. Images Sacra,

cap

4.

Ibid.

Forum. Gretser, De Cruee, ^ " Voi avete messo net sacco nie. e Dio mettara in sacea voi.^^ lib. i., cap 99. * This man's real name was Carosi. His life was published at Tivoli, printed by Indovidono, in 4to, entitled Vita e Profezie del Brandano Sanese Volgarmente detto il Pazzo di Christo. Red^

.Suidas says that Constantine buried part of that cross in the

ding, Yesterday

and

To-day, vol.

iii.,

p. 290.

The True Cross


INSTRUMENTS OV THE PASSION
I.

133
(IF

CHRIST

The

Cross.

2.

Tlic nails (four

is

the nunibor to be prcfcrrctl as


after the time of Cinialniei.
5.

tlu'
3.

most correct, three being used

onl_\-

The

thirty pieces of sih'er.


is

4.

Tiie sudariuiii, or \'eronica.

'I'he

pillar

(which

better given in the ancient form, like that preserveil

in

the Church of S. Praxede in


correct
spear.

proportions).
9.

The

reed

Rome, that of tlie ordinary, architecturally 6. The scourges. 7. The hammer. 8. The and sponge. 10. The cock. ]|. The lantern.

IJ. The sword with which S. I'eter smote ofT the ear of Malcluis. 13. The bowl in which our Sa\iour washed his Apostles' feet. 14. Christ's robe and the dice. 15. The rope with which Christ was bound to the

pillar.

Besides these, the siiidonc, or cloth,


If this last is

in

which our Lord was wrapped.


is,

to be enumerated, as

it

sometimes

ments
should

of the Passion, there surely can

be no reason

among the instruwhy the painiiai/iiin

not

be

also.

This was the headcloth of the blessed Virgin,

which she wrapped arountl the loins of her Son.


father,

gives

a representation

of

this

scene.

Hans Holbein, the What more touching

picture of the exercise of a mother's last privilege!


^

Hist.

0/ Our Lord,

vol.

ii.,

p. 126.

CHAPTER
ND
Pilate wrote a title

VI

THE TITLE OF THE CROSS

"A

and put

it

on the Cross.

And

it

was

written
in
H-\^r,'-

Hebrew,

i<2^^ ^"'^sa pti"'

and Greek,
'

IH'SOrS O NAZ0PEU2

"O

BA2IAEr2 TON lOTAAION

and Latin,"
lEHSUS NAZARENUS' REX lUD.EORUM.

John
The crime
scribed
of the sufferer

xix., ig, 20.

was either proclaimed by a


China, and

crier,

or in-

upon
still

a label affixed to the upper limb of the cross.'


in all

This
execu-

custom

exists in the case of crucifixion in

crimesofthe

tious in Turkey.
^

As
'

this

label

was not

of

perishable
'

Condemned
Written upon
a Label.

material, parchment, ^ ^' papyrus, or such like, S. Chrysostom's "

account sccms the more probable, that the true Cross was
title

discovered by the

being fastened to

it."

The

Syriac, Arabic,
19,

and

Persian translators render the rirXov of S. John xix.,

a tablet; and

Bishop Pearson considers

it

the correct interpretation.'

The

Evangelists differ as to the order of the languages in the super-

scription.
Order
of

Probably that given by

S.

John, the eye-witness,


it

is

correct.

Inscription.

the
'

The Hebrew was written first; country. The Greek was next, The Latin was necessarily lookers-on.
Gretser,

was the language ^

of the

as being familiar to

most of

used, because the sentence


lib. ii.,

De

Crtice, lib.

i.,

cap. 31.

Lipsius,

Dc

Crucc,

cap. 11.

' S.

vol.

Chrysostom on S. John xix., ig. 'Pearson on the Creed, art. iv., note, i., book i., chap, vii., ? 10.

p.

311, ed. iS3g

Lardner, Credibility of the Gospel,

134

The
must he written
ruler,
in llic
hist,

Title of the Cross


in

135
Ijy

tontjuc

whiLli

it

w as [)ronoLinced

the

Roman

and

it

was

that being the place of honor.

That the Hebrew

was

first,

being the least esteemed, wc infer from an accidental observa-

tion of S.

Chrysostom that" the Hebrew tongue"


all,

is

"a

language

despised by

es[)ecially the Italians."

'

Marly commentators give a simjile reason for the triple inscription:

That

it

might be read by

all

of the bystanders,

and

also to

show

that our
^^ Three Languages.
.

Saviour by his sacriiice turned the work of the devil, the


causer of the confusion of tongues, against himself.
sides,

,,.

Why in

Be-

they

call

our attention to the choice of these languages.

That

of

the

Romans was taken because they were


;

the most powerful nation of

the world

of the Greeks, because they were the wisest


religious.^

and most subtile;

while the

Hebrews were the most pious and


however minute,

No

tittle,

of matters pertaining to our

Lord

is

passed

over by His early followers, and therefore they bid us mark


that the gospel

was preached,

after Christ's death, in the

Order in which the Gospel was

same order

in

which His kingship was proclaimed from


first

His throne, the Cross;


the Romans.'

to the Jews, then to the Greeks, lastly to

Another thing to be noted


fastened to the Cross.

is

the means by which the


of

title

was

One mode

cancelling a

bill,

or sentence,

among the Jews was by driving a nail through the document. Christ then, when fulfilling the prophecy, may in truth be said literally to
have nailed
'
'-'

or/r sins

to His Cross.'
iv.
:

Chrj-sostom, 2 Tim., Horn.

" These three tongues were eminent before all others the Hebrew, because of the Jews who gloried in God's laws the Greek, because the wise men of the Gentiles the Latin, because of
;
;

Romans, at that time bearing rule over many, and indeed over almost all nations." S. Aug. on .S. John, Hom. xvii,, 4. " And these are written, because He is the author of all sanctity and purity, which flourished among the Hebrews, to whom was given the divine law; also because He is the author of all truth and wisdom, which flourished among the Greeks also in
the
;

figure because

He

is

the author of all virtue and power, which flourished


justice, redemjition,

among

the Latins

for

and sanctification." S. Bonaventura, Collat., 84 on John. " The Lord is king of Philosophy, practical and natural, and of Theology. The practical is figured by the Roman characters, for the sovereignty of the Romans was especially strong and powerful in warlike matters by the Greek, natural Philosophy and what was wantis

He

made

for us

wisdom,

ing to the Greeks, by the Hebrew, Theology, for the knowledge of divine things

is

gathered
of

up

in the
^

Jews."

Theophylact on S. John chap. xix.


of the

The meaning
;

name

Jesus

is

well known, but few think of the full


lyj, natzar, signifies

meaning

His

he watched over, as a shepherd his flock he obeyed the law of the Lord he protected, defended, as a vinedresser a vineyard he restrained, as lips are from evil he cultivated, as one would a vine. As a noun natzar * Pearson on the Creed. means a branch, a prince, an offspring.
title

" Jesus of Nazareth."

Nazareth from
;

136

"

History of the Cross


what was presumed to be the true Cross was discovered, what
?

When
became

of the title

In the lonely, almost unpeopled waste of the Esquiline Hill in

Rome,
quiet
.

where the
Where
the

traveller crushes

under his foot the dust of what was once the

Palatine wealth of the city,


Title

wendin"

liis

way through
.

Presumed

laucs of viueyards

and olive gardens, marvelling that he


little

is

within the walls of a city, at last he reaches a


all

mound,

that remains of the palace dedicated to the voluptuous orgies of the

boy Emperor, Heliogabalus.


gems,

Here,

in a chariot of

gold studded with

drawn sometimes by abandoned women harnessed instead of


perfumed with incense,
a

horses, or banqueting on silver couches, the air

amid

mimic

rain of roses

and

violets,

the sensual fool gave his

weak
by

might towards corrupting Rome.


yards.

In place of circuses,

now

see vine-

Instead of palaces,

now behold

a half-ruined church, founded

Constantine, A.D. 330, at an expense of one hundred and forty-three

thousand gold scudi.

As

S.

Helena found Mount Calvary polluted by a temple

of

Venus,

so her son would redeem this canker-spot of


of the Title of the Cross,
lation,

Rome,

for this

is

the shrine

and though

fifteen
it,
?)

hundred years

of war, deso(is it

and corruption have swept over

it

has been preserved


is still

too

much
Croce

to say through Divine Providence


in

and

reverenced as Santa

Gerusalemme.
A.D. 720, the basilica

About
Gregory
built; but

became

roofless,

and was repaired by

II.

Two hundred

years later the adjoining monastery was reit

by the twelfth century


building what

again became a ruin.

The monks
florins

were removed to the Baths

of Diocletian,
is

and three thousand

were

expended
structure.

in

probably the greater part of the present

In 1492, during some repairs under the direction of the Carof the apse, closed
Tituliis Crucis."
seals,"

dinal Mendoza, a niche was discovered near the top


Discovery of
the Title.

^Y

^ brlck front, on

which was inscribed "

Within, a lead coffer was found, fastened with three

containing a piece of

wood about two


in

inches thick, twelve and a half

inches in length, and eight inches in breadth.


letters,
'

On

this,

in

imperfect

was the inscription

Hebrew, Greek, and Latin

jESUS Naza-

Moroni, Dictionary of Erudition ; Gerbet, in his Esqicissf de Rome C/iri'tieiiiic, st.iles that on the seals were the words " Gerard, Cardinal of S. Croce." If true the relic was immured in
the twelfth century by a Cardinal titular of this church,

who became Pope

as Lucius II.

Henians, Catholic

Italy, vol.

i.

p. 206.

''7-:g^^^^^^^^x

~\

/:,

'0 8

History of the Cross


Of the Hebrew, only mutilated
parts of the characters

RENE King.
of

remained, enough, however, for


"

a Rabbi to decipher" Nazarene King

Hebrew letters, but in the Syriac, which was Since that the vernacular language of Judea when our Saviour suffered. Of the time the upper portion of the title has become more effaced.
in the ancient

not

Greek ftaaiXsvi, only the


initial is

initials

remain

while of the Latin Rex, the


letters red; for all

wanting.

The

table

was white, the

Roman

judicial sentences

were thus inscribed, and enough traces were

visible to

determine the original colors.

This
Title of

relic is

claimed by the

Roman Church

as being the veritable

the True Cross, which was placed

for safe

keeping

in

the niche

where

it

was found by the Emperor Valentinian HI.


relics,

in the fifth century.

The

custom of immuring highly prized

Paulinus mentions as being

common in his day, a century earlier. As to the genuineness of the holy


to decide as
, Genuineness of

relic,

of course

it is

as impossible

upon that
Alexander.
ijit-

of an intaglio purporting to be of the age of

As

in

the case of the gem, so in that of this ^


at

the Relic.

of

wood, wc Can

least say
'

it

bears evident marks of


it

great antiquity.
that brought by

Curzon and Lord Mahon


S.

both think

the same as
its

Helena from Jerusalem.

Strong proofs of

being

what

it

is

represented are the marks of carelessness, showing evident


preparation, such, for instance, as giving the Latin instead of

haste in

its

the Greek desinence in " Nazarene," the inversion of the letter

in

the

same word, and the writing


the Hebrew, too
little

of

all

the inscriptions from right to

left.

Of
is

remains to form any judgment, but the Greek

the work of another hand than that which formed the Latin characters,
or else one unused to the language.

But the history


completed.
Concluding
History of the Church.

of the

church

itself is

so interesting that

it

must be

In 1744, the facade was erected, mainly from the ruins of

the adjacent temple of Venus.

The columns are

of granite.

and a
heavy

rare marble, bigio luinachcllato,

twelve only eight are


into the
piers

,.,

now visible,

..,

,, others having been built iii the


i_

but of the original


mi.

which divide the nave and

aisles.

The antique
as the

pave-

ment

is

a beautiful specimen of the mosaic

known

Opus Alexan-

drinniii.
'

On

the vault of the apse

is

an exquisite fresco of the discovery


Hist, of the

Curzon, Monasteries of the Levant.

Mahon,

Holy

Cross.

Essay read before

the Royal Soc. of Antiquaries, Feb. 10, 1831.

The
of the Cross; the
Pinturricchio.

Title of the Cross


attributed

139

work

is

by some
is

Id I'erugino,

by others to

On one
eartii

side of the tribune


is

a silver himp burning before


relic;

the ciiapel, witiiin which


is

enshrined the sacred

the floor beneath

formed of
is

brought by S. Helena from Mount Calvary.

Over

this shrine

the inscri[)tion forbidding

women

to enter except

upon the

festival of the

venerable founder.

In the last
chapel.

century the French Republicans desired to search the

After resisting as long as he dared, the Superior gave up some

of the keys, but one


prefect, perhaps

was wanting, being

lost or mislaid.

Tiie French

moved by some

lingering feeling of reverence,


its

would

not force the doors, and the chapel and


turbed.

sacred contents were undis-

There are two facts connected with Santa Croce which are interesting.

One
other

is,
is,

that in this church the

Golden Rose

'

is

consecrated, and the


basilica,

that within the precincts of S. Croce


in

was anciently a

probably the only one


could be pleaded.
of

the imperial city in which the cause of a slave


place
?

What
all

more

fitting for the


is

sanctuary of the

title

Him
'

in
?

whom

are free

And

the place of this shrine a mere

accident

dates perhaps from the end of the eleventh century. Tt is an ornament musk, and balsam, symbolical of the Divinity, body and soul of Christ. It was consecrated by the Pope on the fourth Sunday in Lent. In the ceremony allusion is made to the fruit of good works, the flower of the field, and to the rose and lily as emblematic of the Virgin. After mass it is carried away by the Pope, and if the intended recipient is in Rome, it is presented to him by his Holiness himself. In 1446, Eugenius sent one to Henry VI. Henry VIII. was the favored recipient of this gracious gift from both Julius II. and Leo X. Charles IX. of France received the Rose from Pius V. after the massacre of S. Bartholomew. The Latest
of jjold,

The Golden Rose

instance of the extension of this distinguished courtesy was to Isabella,

Queen

of Spain, by his

Holiness Pius IX.

beautiful specimen of a branch of a rose-bush literally blooming in gold

is

preserved in
cap.
7.

the Motel de Cluny.

Walcott,

Sacred Archeology; Ciampini, Vet. Alon., tom.

iii.,

CHAPTER

VII

THE DOCTRINAL TEACHING OF THE CRUCIFIXION


when studying the works of artists, especially of the earlier masters, that we are not looking upon a mere work of art designed only to please the eye. They were meant
should never forget
" to teach the heart, for the
Symbolism
of

WE

handmaid

of Religion," as art has been called,


office

^vas
^^^

Compelled to do her
^^^.^^

Early Painters.

^j^^^jj.

even when the artificers individual Hves, wcrc " of the earth earthy."

Everything had
sented,
all

its

teaching; the adjuncts of the solemn scene repre-

imparted this lesson to those whose only knowledge of that

which pertained to salvation came from the oral teaching of their


preachers; the not less forcible, though

the walls of their simple parish

mute teachers which hung on churches, or, graven in stone, made the

walls of their magnificent cathedrals eloquent.

The sun and moon,


all

the

presence of the beloved disciple and grief-stricken mother, the skull of


the father of the

human

race,
;

the penitent Alagdalene,

told the
sin,

story of the world lost and saved

enforced the doctrine of death for

and

life

in

the redemption then

being paid.

Hence the ministry

of

angels, " All ministers to the heirs of salvation,"

was represented not

onlv attendant upon their and our dying Lord, but u[)on the two thieves,
as types of the

two

classes of the saved

and

lost in

the

human

race.

In the accompanying illustration

we have

the youthful, unbearded


of glory

image of the Saviour, crowned with the crown


represented
Cross of Ancient assistcd Ivory, Ninth Century.
. ,

by the Father,
r*

by the hand giving the Latin benediction,


,

bv angels.
^.j^^

y^ On

either side are the


tlic

Sun and Moon,


i

Ti/r

^^^j^

^^^j|.j^

haud to

chcck, an ancient form of exis

pressing grief.

On

the right hand of our Lord

the Church, repreleft,

sented by a female figure holding a triumphal banner; on the


140

the

The

Crucifixion (Ivory

Work

of

tlie

IXth Century).
141

From Jameson's

History of

Our Lord.

14:

History of the Cross


face, holding,

Synagogue with averted


sion to the

probably, a palm-branch in allu-

day when the Jews saluted him King.

The
hand

blessed

Mother and

S.

John stand on
is

either side, each with the

to the cheek; that of the Virgin


still

covered by her drapery, an early


in

Oriental sign of respect,

preserved

Italy,

where the

ecclesiastics

cover their hands in divers acts of reverence towards the Pope; such, for

example, as receiving the cardinal's hat.


his hand, his

The Apostle holds

a scroll in

being the only Gospel recording the presence of himself and


final

the Virgin Mother at the


figures of

scenes.

Below, are the old

classical

Ocean, pouring water from

his urn,

and Earth bearing a tree

and giving suck

to a serpent, while the three intermediate figures are

supposed to be typical of the resurrection from earth and sea (an explanation not satisfactory to
us).
all,

In place of the serpent, sometimes Earth, as mother of

nourishes

young

children; at others she holds a small

human

figure \\hich repre-

sents darkness over the earth.

Again, between the figures of Earth

and Water

is

a female figure with banner


veil, like

and globe, or simply draped

with uplifted

Tellus in the Catacombs, which represents the


full of

Heavens,

for "

heaven and earth are

thy glory."

Sometimes on

the same level with

the Church and

Synagogue, on the
left

hand,

sits

a fe-

male crowned with


towers,

who
to
of

is

sup-

posed

be the
Jeru-

emblem
Sun and Moon at Crucifixion (Ancient Ivory). From Jameson s History 0/ Our Lord.

salem, while coiled

around the foot of


the Cross
is

"the

old serpent," either lifeless, his head having already been crushed
heel of the seed of the

by the

woman,
fall

or else helplessly gazing

upward upon the


the
In
first.'

second

Adam,

as on the

he looked triumphantly

down upon

The

figures of Sol

and Luna are differently represented.


first

some
by
The

instances they are in chariots, the


'

drawn by

horses, the latter


is

Hist, of
will

Our Lord,

vol.

ii.,

p.

146.
trust,

Some

of this explanation
archjeologists.

unsatisfactory.

symbols

be better interpreted,

we

by future

Doctrinal Teaching
oxen;
in others

ol the

Ciucihxion

143

they arc symbolized

l)\-

full-lcnsjth figures

with reversed

torches, etc.

Hy the

ele\-enth centur\-

all

these

ni)-slic persDnificatioiis

vanish,

and

Angels Round Cross (Duccio, Siena).

From Jameson's History of Our Lord.

Angels Attending the Crucifixion (PietroCavallini,

Assisi).

Tom]3.me%oa's Hisfory of Our Lord,

give place to groups of passionate angels and other figures betokening,


if

not a more earnest faith, a more realistic one.

The

serpent lingers the

longest, being found even in

modern

art.

144

History of the Cross


skull of

The
self

Adam

also retains its place.

In early

MSS. Adam himin

starts

from

his sepulchre

and receives the blood

a Eucharistic
of the

chalice.
charist,

Sacrificial
is

types are varied.

The

pelican,

emblem

Eu-

placed either above or below the Cross; the wolf suckling


in allusion to ancient
is

Romulus and Remus,


a red heifer
is

Rome,

or an altar on which

being sacrificed,

below the Cross.'

The

figure of the

Divine sufferer changes as has been noted.

Lady

Eastlake, in her History of

Our Lord, has divided

the subject

of the Crucifixion into various heads: Symbolical, Doctrinal, Historical,

Legendary, Allegorical, and Realistic, with their subdivisions.

To

her

work we

refer the reader for the full treatment of the subject

under these
follow-

divers heads, only condensing from her admirable

book the three

ing descriptions.
First,

the Doctrinal Crucifixion.

with the few truehearted believers, the Jews and the Romans, but illuminated by " the

The

great scene of the

Atonement, not

literally

^ .. Doctrinal
,

light of fulfilled prophecy i r t>


j^j-j

adored bv -

saints.

"

As
" the

Crucifixion.

ijistance,

this

distinguished authoress gives the great


calls

Crucifixion by Fra Angelico da Fiesole, which she justly

highest example of the mystery of our Redemption that the pencil of

man

has produced for the edification of his fellow creatures.

It is in

the Convent of S. Marco at Florence

...
idea,

It

knits together in
earliest

one

unexampled whole the grand Christian

from the

glimmer-

ings of truth permitted to the patriarchs of the old law to the joyous

confessions of faith delivered by the latest preachers of the painter's

own

brotherhood."

The

figure of Christ

is

represented, not hanging from the Cross, but

with arms extended as properly carrying out the idea of the uni\-ersal emThe repentant thief, in " holy bracing of the merits of the sacrifice.

peace," turns to

Him who

has promised that he shall be the "first

The impenitent, with a "wail of pain," averts " only Physician." " Below, on the extreme right, his head from the
fellow heir in Paradise."
are the three patron saints of the house of Medici," that family having

presented the convent to the Order of the Dominicans. with his


tightly,

S.

Lawrence,

symbol, the gridiron, at his side; S. Cosmo, clasping his hands

and

S.

Damian turning away


'

in

a burst of grief.
i.,

The

special

Didron, Christ. Icon.,

vol.

p. 343-

Ifr;^%i

146

History of the Cross

patron saint of the Convent of S. Marco kneels with open Gospel in

hand; next stands the precursor,

S.

John the Baptist; next

is

the group

of the Maries and the beloved disciple.

On
himself.

the

left of

the Cross kneels the founder of the Order, S. Dominic


S.

Near him bows


Above,
in
full

Jerome, his cardinal's hat cast upon the


is

ground.

Episcopal robes,

S.

Ambrose, an

allusion to

his noble exercise of official

power when righteously rebuking the Emhis

peror.

Near him

is .S.

Augustine;

pen and book

refer to his Rules,

which the Dominicians had adoj)ted.


stigmata,
of his
dict,
is

S. Francis, honored with the


is

near S. Jerome.
his heart as
if

Behind, S. Bernard
offering his

clasping the Rules


S.

Order to

work

to his Lord.

Bene-

who by

self-inflicted flagellation strove to suffer like his


S.

scourged
"

Master, stands holding his rod.

Romualdus

is

next.

The kneeling
it

Franciscan turning away from the Cross " as not worthy of

is

supS.

posed to be either
Peter Martyr and S.

S. (lualbertus, or, perhaps, the painter himself.

Thomas Aquinas complete

the group.

In the centre of the semicircular framework is the typical pelican, with the inscription, " Siinilis factits sum pclicano solitudinis," " I am On either side are halflike a pelican of the wilderness " (Ps. cii., 6).

length figures of the prophets bearing scrolls inscribed with the appropriate prophecies.

On the left, David presents, " lis sit i iiica potavcntiit iiic accto,'^ my thirst they gave me vinegar to drink " (Ps. Ixix. 21).
,

" In

Jacob:
Ico,"

" Ad prcdani

fili

mi

ascciidisti ;

rcquicsccus

accubnisti

tit

"

From

the prey,

my

son,

thou

art

gone up;

he stooped

down, he couched
:

as a lion " (Gen.

xli.x., 9).

" I am beaten by them." Zechariah " His plagatus sum," " After seven " Post iicbdomadcs vii. ct Ixii. occidct Chst." Daniel:

and three score and two weeks Messiah


25, 26).

shall

be cut off" (Dan.

ix.,

Dionysius the Arcopagite: " Da/s


alluded to in Acts xvii., 34.
It is

uatiirie

patitur."

This person

is

related that being in Heliopolis at the

time of the Crucifixion, he noted the eclipse of the sun which occurred
death of Jesus, and, knowing that it was supernatural, he exIt is also stated that in conseclaimed, " The God of Nature suffers."
at the

quence of

this

phenomenon, the Athenians erected the altar" To the

Unknown God."

Doctrinal Teaching of the Crucifixion


Isaiah:

147

"

I'l'rr

laiiguorcs

)iostros,

idem

tiilit

ct

dolorcs nostras,"
liii.,

" Surely he hath home our ;^ricfs Jeremiah: " O Vos oinncs qui transitis per viain attcnditc
est dolor sicnt dolor mens,"
if

and carried mir sorrows " (Isa.

4).

et vidcte si

" All ye that pass by, behold and sec there be any sorrow like unto my sorrow " (Lam. i., 12). "' " I bare it upon my (^humile), E/.ekiel: " Exaltavi Itgniiiii hilc

shoulder" (Ezek.
:

xii., 7).

Job Erythrean Sibyl: "

" Qui del de canibus ei ut satnrem."


J\Iorte

(Not found).
soiniio subscepto

morictur

Tribus diebus

et tunc ab infcris regressus

ad

hiccvi voiiet

primus."

These words are

considered as a para[)hrase on the articles of the descent into


ascent to

Hades and

Heaven

in tlie

Nicene Creed.
is

In the centre of the base

S.

Dominic, from whose hands proceeds a

sort of genealogical tree presenting the

most eminent brethren


2.

of his

Order.

On

S.

Dominic's right

is:

i.

Pope Innocent V.
Dominic

Cardinal
3.

Hugo, who performed the funeral


of Florence;
5.

services to S.
4.

in 1221.

Paulus, Patriarcha Gradensis, in Florence.

Antoninus, Archbishop

he was alive at the time of the execution of the work.


6.

Jordanus of Germany, the second General of the Order.


7.

Nicolas,

Provinciales Portugalesis.
saint

Remigius

of Florence.

8.

Buonianus,
Cardinal

and martyr.
tlie

On

left

of

S.

Dominic:
3.

i.

Pope Benedict

II.

2.

Giovanni of Florence.
Jerusalem.
forte,
4.

Pietro della Pallude of France, Patriarch of


5.

Albertus Magnus.

Raimond
7.

of Catalonia, of Pegna6.

the third General of the Order, elected 1237.

Chiaro da Sesto

of Florence, " Provincialis

Romanus."

S.

Vincent of Valencia,
"

The marvellous comBernard, saint and martyr. " proceeding, as it does, in pleteness of this work," says Lady Eastlake,
Predicator."
8.

equal proportions from the Churchman, the Christian, the


the Man, will excuse the length of this description.
fixion
is

Monk, and
other Cruci-

No

like

it

except

in

the mere fact of the devotional as opposed to

the historical character; and in the Virgin,


it

some

respects, such as the attitude of

forms an exception to this class."

PART

11.

CHAPTER
THE CROSS
IN

EARLY CHRISTIAN ART


in

THE
period
it

sign of the cross

was used

the age immediately succeeding

the Apostolic, perhaps even in that time, but at what precise

became an
visible,
or are

Antiquity of
the Cross.

actual,
tangible

form

we
the

ignorant.

Tertullian, in
ury,
ridicules

the second cent-

accusation

of

their enemies, that the Christians

worshipped the Cross as an idol;


thus
if

not admitting

its

common
for prein their

use, yet affording

ground

suming that
worship.'

it

was known

At

a very early period,

some

zealots, taking the

words

of S. Paul
,
.

literally, J
'

" Hence-

forth

let

no
;

man
I

, ^ , Cross Imprinted on the Body,

trouble

me

for

bear in

my body
"

the
(Gal.

marks of the Lord Jesus


vi., 17),

imprinted upon their

foreheads, and other parts of their

bodies the Cross, and,


stances, probably, the

in

some

in^iTZrr''-irs-

monogram
From
Gretser's

of Christ.
ites,

The

heretical Jacob-

Tlie Cross Imprinted on the Body.

who

rejected water, substifire,

De

Sancla

Criice.

tuted a baptism of

branding with a red-hot iron a cross upon the


'

Tertullian. Apology, xvi,


151

15-

History of the Cross


This was no new invention.

cheeks or foreheads of their proselytes.'

Among

the ancient Syrians, Greeks, and other nations indehble marks


face, or elsewhere,

were made on the

denoting the standing of the bearer.

The

slave

was thus marked with

jn of his master, the soldier


re that of his

commander,

the idolater that of his


favorite god.'

But persecution, and


the severe canons of the

Church against those

who
away
for

needlessly threw

their

lives

through

vainglory, or inordinate zeal

martyrdom, soon taught

the believers to add the wis-

dom

of tlie serpent to the

harmlessness of the dove;

and the sacred symbol was


carefully

concealed, with
till

otlier mysteries,'

in

the

fulness of time, the faith in

Christ

crucified,

which

its

upholders declared had long


"
Christ Represented as Orpheus.

filled

the hovel

and the
openly
in

From Twining's

palace"

could

be

Symbols of Early and MedicEval Christian Art.

proclaimed.

Hence, even

the holes and dens of the earth, the Catacombs, where the highest

ofificer in

the Court and the lowliest slave knelt side by side to celebrate the sacrifice
of their
'

common

Lord, for centuries the Cross was only timidly shown.

Perverting the text, "

He

shall baptize

you with the Holy Ghost and with

lire."

Matt.

iii.,

II.
^

Procopius says, "


,

See Rev. xx

4.
;

Spencer,

Rev.

xiii.,

16

xiv., g.

Many marked their wrists, or their arras, with the sign of the Cross.' De Leg. Hcb., lib. ii., cap. 20. Lowth on Isaiah xliv. 5. Compare Julian the Apostate, reviling the Christians, says, " Yeworship the wood
,

of the Cross, painting figures thereof on the forehead and before doors."

Tertul.,

Oxford

Ptolemy Philopator enslaved the Jews, and marked upon their foreheads Trans., p. 57, note c. Hammond, Annot. Rev., xx., 4. the ensign of Bacchus, an ivy leaf.
'

De Quincey

gives a graphic account of the secrecy which the early Christians were obliged

to practice, in his essay

on the Essenes.

Hist,

and

Critical Essays.

The Cross
The

in liaiiy

Christian Art.

15:

pious believers were contented to adopt as a type of Christ, the


b\-

representation of Orpheus, surrounded


nieiod\- of
iiis

wild beasts entranced

by the

lyre, or

the
lost

Good ShepPagan and other symbols


Christianized.

herd

"

carrviii!/

his

sheep" upon
dcr,
'

his

slmulhis

or leaning
(the

upon
of

staff

symbol

the

Christian

hierarchy according to S. Augustine),


or they read the sacrifice of the
of

Lamb
Clearer

God

in

the typical sla\-ing of Abel


of Isaac.

and the offering up

tokens the early Christians


not,

requiretl

so

they consecrated pagan

em-

blems with a holier significance, and

adopted the F\lfot and Tau crosses

instead of

the
Rc-iircbeutation of I'an

literal figure, be-

Applied

to Christ as

cause thev were


familiar to their

"^" ^'' Shepherd.

From

Maitland's Church in Ihf Qilacoiiios,

enemies, and could give no information to their


persecutors.

From
sN'mbol
it

this scrupulous

guarding of the sacred

has been erroneously concluded that


Early Use of the Cross.

the use of the actual cross, or even


that of
its

represented figure, was un-

know-n

in

the early Church until a comparatively

late period.

An
Triple Cross, Representing
the Second Person of the Trinity.

authoress of the highest authority in art has

1^^^,^

^hus misled.
S.

After quoting the well-known

words of
^^,^^

Chrysostom that the Cross


in

From Twining's .iVw^j.

everywhere "held
hills,

honor, in
sea, in

on Early use of
the Cross.

the highway, on mountains, in forests, on


ships,
'

on the

on

islands,

on our beds and on our clothes, on our arms,

in

our

Lord Lindsay

states that this


is

carrying a goat at Tan.agra


lost

symbol was adopted from the Clreeks. A statue of Mercury mentioned by Pausanias. According to this theory it is not the
Lindsay, Christian
the

sheep, but the scape-goat of the wilderness that our Saviour rescues.
i.,

Ar/., vol.

p. 41.

Or.

King thinks

emblem

represents a Gnostic Anubis with the double


p. 201.

head, one

human and

the other that of a jackal.

King, Gnostics,

154
chambers,
in

History of the Cross


our banquets, on gold and silver vessels, on gems,
in

the paint-

ings of our walls, on the bodies of diseased beasts, on

human

beings

possessed by devils, in war and peace, by day, by night, in the dances

and the meetings of the fasting and praying," she goes on to say, " that this was true in some sense, there can be no question,"
of the feasting,

but that ancient objects of

art, as far as

known, show no corrobation


at

of

the use of the Cross in the simple

form familiar to us
S.

any period There

preis

ceding or closely succeeding the words of


doubt, however, that the " so-called

Chrysostom.

no

monogram
is

of Christ " was

much

used

and venerated

as representing to the eye of faith the sign of the Cross.

In early Christian art our Lord

represented as free from bonds,

divested of
tree."

all

circumstances of suffering, with no sign of the " accursed


of

Faith needed to be strengthened by depicting the signs

Christ's love

and power

as

shown
this

in

healing the sick and raising the


suffer-

dead rather than by representing the ignominy and horror of His


ings
as

man.

In

assuming

natural repugnance
also

on the part of

Christians to use the Cross,

we must

remember

that the

Romans

looked upon the form of this instrument of punishment with horror.

According to Cicero, " the very name of the Cross was banished from
the thoughts,
eyes,

and ears of a

Roman

citizen."

It

required the

abolition of the
Arbor
Infelix.

punishment
,

of crucifixion

and the lapse of generations


.

before the " old ideas connected with the Arbor Infclix gave

way

before

its

new and

glorious meaning, and the pure

form of the Cross emerged to sight, no longer the sign of a horrible


death, but of the Divine
fore, to the

Triumph over

all

Death.

Returning, therein greatest

evidence of that form of art which exists

abundin

ance, namely, coins,

we

find the first

appearance of the simple cross

the dignified form

[/.

c, the

liasta, or

long cross held erect] on a coin


'

issued by Galla Placidia,

who

died a.d. 451."


it

In clearing up the above error,

will

be briefly shown by a few


in

examples that the Cross was used and honored even

Apostolic days,

and those of the Church

of the first three centuries.


.\.D. 79.

Pompeii was overwhelmed with ashes


cross in

In one of the pass'

ages of a ruin
jg

in that city,

known

as the house of Pansa,

Pompen.

placed, SO as to be visible to the passers-by, a cross in


a panel of white stones.
'

bas-relief

upon

Opposite, visible only to the


pp. 315, 317.

Hist,

of Our Lord^

vol.

ii.,

The Cross
iiidwellers, is

in Jiaiiy Christian

Art

'55

represented one of the guardian serpents, the Dei Custodes.

Mazois explains the whole, that probably at that time the Cross was a

symbol understood by the


of paganism,

Cliristians

who

placed

it

among

the symbols

to inform the faithful that licrc the truth


all

had found an

as)'lum under the safeguard of


S.

the popular superstitions.'


to the Britons in the third centviry.

Cadvan preached the Gospel


bears four crosses.

His

monument

The

inscription

is

in

Early Cross

in

Latin, partly in British characters of the

above date."

Britain,

Maitland gives the following epitaph from the Catacombs:


In the inscription, the lower

arm

of tlie Cross interferes with a letter,

compelling the sculptor to

change

its

shape, thus showing


that

the Cross was

not an after-tho

-letter-

but

contemporane

LA WV.

ous with the


ing.

The epitaph
rests

reads: " Lannus, the

Martyr of Christ
here.

He

suffered

under Diocletian. The sepulchre is also


for

FO-r/ar

his

successors."

The

letters,

E. P. S., according to Boldetti, stand for ct postcris suis.^

Diocletian reigned from A.D.

284-305,

nearly one
at

hundred years
of that

before the time of S. Chrysostom.


i

The baths
'

Rome
stated,

Em-

peror were built about the , year w ^02, one year before the ^
persecution began.

, In ,,, n .u ot the tjaths <

Forty thousand Christians,


work.

it is

Diocletian,

were employed

in that

Upon some

of the bricks have

been found

the sign of the Cross, supposed to have been placed there by the work-

men.*
'

Mazois, Les Riiines de Pomfcii, part

ii.,

p. 34,

quoted

in

Dyer's Pompeii,

p.

321.

cross, unfinished,
in that city.

covered with insulting inscriptions and caricatures has lately been discovered

New
is

York Tribune, March


a

15, 1S66.

Perhaps what

is

supposed

to

of an

enemy
it

that of a Gnostic heretic, like the Graffito crucifix discovered in

be the work Rome, but in

either case

shows that the cross was


v.,

well-known symbol.
p. 127.
^

(Eng.) Ecclesiologist, vol.


'

N.

S., p. 224.

Maitland, Church in the Catacombs,

Murray, Handbook of Rome,

p. 58.

156

History of the Cross


in

Eusebius also says that Constantine erected crosses


streets of
, . Erected by

the principal

Rome
tius
^^^
'

and of Constantinople, and


seemingly asserts that the
fc>
-'

in his palace.
' '

Lactan-

last

was, in fact, a cruci-

Constantine.

The appeal

to coins

is still

more unfortunate
is

for

Lady

Eastlake.

The

illustration giv'en in the

margin

of a coin of Crispus, sou of Constant-

ine
Cross on Coins.

and

his wife Fausta,

and was

slain nine years after.

who was created C^sar A.D. 315, The reverse bears a figure
Another
the
A.D.

of our blessed

Lord holding

a plain Cross, " in the dignified form,"

between two persons,

probably Constantine and Crispus.

instance can be found in a

medal issued

just after
in

death of Constantine
}^J.

The Cross

is

plainly

depicted above the Labarunt.

Other examples are found on


the coins of Jovian, A.D. 363
Coin of Crispus.
;

Valentinian. A.D. 364; Grat-

From

Gretser's

Dt Siuula Cruce.

ianus

and Valentinianus,

A.D. 378.
feet,
It

\\\

the last instance the

Emperor
in his

treads a serpent under his

while he holds a long cross

hand." the originator of the s\-mbol,

has been a disputed point

who was

or mound, surmounted by the Cross, a type of the conquest of Christ


. ,. , Author of the Mound.
,,

over the world.

Ducange gives the honor to Valentinian. o Gretser presents a coin of that Emperor confirming that
it

claim.

Others trace the emblem to Jovian;

appears on the coins of

Theodosius, A.D. 375-395; other coins of this reign exhibit the Cross

borne as a sceptre by the Emperor or held by the figure of Victory.'


IVIore

examples might be given, but


Placidia,

sufficient

evidence has been

adduced antedating Galla


part of a century.

who

died A.D. 451, by the better

Yet, that about her time the world more freely

reverenced the holy sign may be seen from the fact that the Cross appears " for the first time, distinct and isolated, beside an epitaph, in
A.D. 438-'"
'

(Eng.) Ecclesiologisi vol.


,

v.,
iii..

N.

S., p. 226.

Lactantius died A.D. 330.

' 3

Gretser,
Ibid.

De

Cruce, torn.

lib. i.,

caps. S-14.

Hemans, Aniient

Chiistiaitity

and Siured Art,

p. 580.

Tlic Cross in Early Christian Art.


It is sufficient

157

glory to that empress of unequal fame,' that to her

we

are indebted

for the

"

first

instance that can be authenticated " of the

Cross occupyini^ a prominent position

" on
is

large

monuCross in sepulchre of
Galla Placidia.

ments

of art."

SS. Nazario e
is

Her sepulchral chapel ,,,.,. ,, Celso, built in A.D. 440, at Ravenna; tliedome
''

in

the church of

azure with golden stars,

in

the midst of which shines a golden cross.

Fourteen hundred years have passed since that


cross, uninjured, save

dome was

finished

but the

by the ravages

of time,

still

protects

tomb of the Cresars which has not been violated. The mausoleum of Augustus is now a circus; the tomb of Hadrian, a fortress; but the ashes of Galla I'lacitlia, Honorius, and \'alentinianus III. rest beneath tlie shadow
the only
of

the

first

representation of the Cross thus exalted,

to hallow not only a sepulchre, but also a ' '

temple to ^

HiM
dis-

~
Galla

Cross, Issued by
Placidia,

who The Cross


is

the Resurrection and the Life.


suffered
its

mutations,

in

honor and

^^"^ Century.

From
^"'''^

Jameson's

honor.
its

Rufinus says that every house

in

Alexandria had

hisiotv of

Uur

door-posts, entrances, windows, and walls painted with

the holy sign.

The Emperors Valcns and Theodosius,


bit

A.D. 427, required

thai every sign of our Sa\'iour, whether engraved or depicted,

should

be effaced

of

pre-Puritan spite.

Four years

later,

the second
Still

Council at Ephesus required every private house to possess a Cross.


further reverence was

shown

to the Cross
its

by the Council
inlaid in the

of Constantiof a

nople f"
church,

in
in

TruUo "

),

which forbade

being

pavement

order that the symbol of our salvation should not be trampled

under

foot.

The

natural feelings of love and veneration soon led the primitive

Christians to adorn with precious


'

gems and jewels the symbol, which


' '

to

the world told only of shame, ignominy, and death, but to J o y

r-. j Oemmed or
jeweiied crosses.

the believers spoke of redemption and salvation.

Bosio asserts that the idea of thus ornamenting the Cross was derived

from the salutation which


'

(^so

says tradition) S.
to

Andrew

uttered

when
com-

.Alternately exalted

and degraded, she lived


first

be a Gothic Queen, a

Roman

Empress,

twice a c.iptive of Barbarian armies.

Once she was driven twelve miles on


husband's murderer.

foot amidst the

mon

herd before the car of the usurper, her

Literally, her ns/dcs .nre

here preserved, for, in 1577, some children thrusting a taper through an aperture in her tomli,
set fire to the vestments clothing the royal corpse,

and

all

was consumed.

Hemans, Ancient

Christianity
''

Hist,

and Art, pp. 356-7. of Our Lord, vol. ii.,

p.

318.

158

History of the Cross


beheld the instrument of
it,

he
off

first

Iiis

martyrdom.

When

yet a long

way

he beheld

and, falling upon his knees, exclaimed, " Hail! Cross

which was consecrated by the

body

of Christ,

and adorned as
'

with pearls by his members."

No

early

gemmed

crosses
re-

have been preserved, but


presentations of

them and

of

the jewelled

monogram

are fre-

quent

in

the Catacombs and on

sarcophagi.

Eusebius also informs us that Constantine " set

up the symbol of the SavingPassion, formed

of

precious
'

stones."

But

such

valuable
have

^J i^^^^T^OWaI^^
!^^^""'^"^"'^'^"^'""^'^^"
Christ Holding a

treasures

despoiled.

The

Gemmed

Cross.

engraving given
is

From

Bosio's

La Trionfante

e Cloriosa Croce.

from the Catof

acombs.

It

was carved on the sarcophagus


in

Sextus

Petronius Probus, a Christian officer

the time of \'al\\-as

entinian (the latter part of the third century), and

formerly
(Christ
?),

in

the ancient Church of S. Peter.

The

figure

holding a
(/. .,

gemmed

cross, stands
in

upon

a struc- s.Pudentiana.trom
ten,
F''<;sco

ture of stones

perhaps the Church),

number,

m
of S.

the

Church

Pud-

probably signifying infinity; from this base flow the four


mystical rivers of Paradise.'
,

entiana.

from

Ciampini's

Vetera Aloiiifitenia,

Exceptmg

the examples in the Catacombs and on

the tombs, the earliest representations of jewelled crosses that have been
preserved are the mosaics and frescos which adorn
'
' '

many

of the Italian

qua in corpore Chris ti dedicata es, ct ex membrorum eius margaritis ornata. Antequam asceiideret Dominus, timorem terrenum habuisti, tnodo vera amorem calcstem obtines, pro voto susciperis. Sciris enim a Credentibus, qtianta in te gaudia habeas, quanta munera pre~ paraia." Bosio, Tr ionfante Croce, lib. vi., cap. 12. The scene is represented by Guido in a fresco in S. Andrew's Chapel, Church of S. Gregorio, Rome.
Salve Crux,
''

Life of Constantine,

lib.

iii.,

cap. 40.

'Bosio,

lib. vi.,

cap. 12.

The Cross
cluirclics.

in Karl\

Christian

y\rt.

159
for-

The

fresco on the roof of the apse of S.


I.,

I'LuleiUiana,

merly assigned to the time of .Vdrian


to
tlie

but by Crowe and CavalcascUe


first

fourth

century,

is

pronounced the
Seated
.

in

merit
is

amontj

Cliristian

mosaics.

in

the

centre

the

Mosaics in churches.
in s.

Saviom- with one arm e.vtended, in the other is an open book ! ,^ -I' i> bS. 1 raxedis inscribed Conservator hcclcsiac 1 iidcntiaiuc.
,
,
.

Pudentiana.

and riKlentiana, with leafy crowns

in their

hands, are at a lower level.


in

In front are S. Peter and S. Paul, with eight other figures;

the back-

ground, beyond a portico with arcades, are seen various stately buildings, "

one a rotunda, another a jxirallelogram with gable-headed front,


bapistr_\-

recognizable as a

and

basilica, here,

we may

believe, in authentic

copy from the


AboN-e
tlie

earliest tyjjes of the period of the first Christian


in air, a large cross,

Emperors.

group, and hovering

studded with gems,

surmounts the head


Evangelists."
'

of our Saviour,

between the four symbols of the

In the Church of S. ^laria Maggiore, at


saics

Rome, decorated with mo-

by Sixtus
'

III., A.D.

432-440, above the arch of triumph, over the

tribune, surrounded

bv scenes from the Old and which


is

New

Tes-

In = , 0. Maria
,

taments,
of

is

a medallion on

represented the throne

Maggiore.

God,

richl}-

ornamented with gems.

At the back

is

a jewelled cross
veil,

resting upon another, surmounted by a crown, from which flows a

shrouding, as

it

were, the lower cross.

Upon
which

the seat

is

placed the

Book

of Life with seven seals.

Here the Cross stands


in
it

for

Him who
g ^g^ia cosmedin.

suffered

upon
is

it.

Another example,
Maria Cosmedin
is

has the same direct

symbolism,

in S.

in

the same city.

date of the mosaics

of about the year .V.D. 553.

The The

gemmed
robes
in

Cross

is

placed upon a royal throne, blazing with jewels.

S.

Paul and S. Peter stand on either side, covering their hands with their
reverence
(a

custom observed

in

some ceremonies
roll,

of the Latin
It is

Church to

this day), the


.S.

one holding a
is

the other the keys.

significant that to

Paul

assigned the right hand, the place of honor,


left.

while S. Peter occupies the


the most
to the
'

This disposition of the Apostles was


S.

common

until

about the year 800, when the claims of

Peter

supremacy were exalted.


p. 495.

Hemans, Ancient Christianity and Sacred Art,


is

"

Bosio attempts to explain this testimony of S. Paul's supremacy in honor.

mosaic

He says the according to the Greek custom, which regarded the right as you " enter" the choir,
go

facing the altar, as the pl.ice of honor, whereas the Latin Church held the right as you "

5 2

o
'3;

The Cross
There
Archangel,
is

in

Early Christian Art.


mosaic
in

i6i

also

a very

fine

the Church of S. Michael the

at Ka\-enna, A.D. 545, in

which Christ stands erect holding a


S.

masjnificent Latin cross. ^


erly in the old S.

Bosio gives an illustration formMichael,

Peter's,

Rome,

in

which the wounded


streams of blood
of the latest inS.

Ravenna.
'^
^-

Lamb

stands at the foot of the Cross,

P"<"'^'

Rome.
John Lateran.

flowing from his breast and feet.'

One
is

Stances before the change to a crucifix


S.

in

the Church of
Part

John Lateran
the
its

at

Rome,
cross

rebuilt
in
is

by Nicholas IV., A.D. 1288-94.

of the church

was burned

1309,

but the mosaics were preserved.

Above

gemmed

the dove, the s\-mbol of the Holy Ghost

diffusing

divine influence; believers, typified b}- hearts and lambs,


is

are partaking of the life-giving streams of Paradise^; below

the holy

Jerusalem, the city of God,


rises

its

gate guarded by an angel; from within


is

the palm

of victory,

upon which
is

perched the phoenix of immor-

talit}'.

About the same date

the exquisite mosaic crucifix o\'er the

tribune of S. Clcmente.
out " the more exalted.

In other words, as on the stage, or in a picture, the right hand of the


left.

scene of art

is

the spectator's

Trioitfaiitc Croce, lib. vi.

cap. 12.
all

other point clearer

we quote from
.\.D., in

Marriott

'*
:

An

enumeration of

To make this and anknown monuments ante-

which the to Apostles are represented together, would show that hand is assigned to S. Paul. If the rule were invariable that .S. Paul occupied the one place, S. Peter the other, there would be some show of probability for the assertion, that in these early times the place of honor was not what it now is that the spectator's right, not the right hand of the principal percedent to the year 800
in a very large

majority of cases, the place of our Lord's right

Testimony of the Catacombs, p. 76. lamb as a symbol of Christ is instructive. In the Catacombs, and on ancient sepulchres it stands on a hill amid the four rivers of Paradise. It sometimes bears on its shoulders a crook and milii-pail. According to Northcote, it then typifies the Eucharist.
sonage, indicated the place of precedence.
'

The development

of the

But Walcott says it then represents the Good Shepherd. In the fourth century, its head is crowned with the Cross and monogram. In the fifth century the nimbus appears. In the sixth
it

bears a spear, ending with a cross, the

emblem

of

Wisdom

according to Walcott, or else bleedgirded with a golden zone of

ing from five wounds, one gushing into a chalice.

Still later, it is

and bears the banner Cross of the Resurrection, or treads upon a serpent (Rev. xviii., 14). In the eighth and ninth centuries it rests on a throne amid saints and angels as in the Apocalyptic vision. Walcott, Sacred Architology, " Lamb" see also Didron,
Justice
(Is. xi., 5),

Power and

Christ. Icon.

" In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for uncleanness " (Zech. xiii.). Mystically signifying, according to

Ambrose. Prudence. Temperance, Fortitude, and Justice. De Paradiso ex Gen., 43. AcBernard, the river of Mercy, the river of Wisdom, the river of Grace, and In the fountain of Mercy, we have the water of remission to wash the river of Charity. away sin in that of Wisdom, we have the water of discretion to quench our thirst in that
S.

cording to S.

of Grace, the water of devotion to water the fruit of our good works

while that of Cliarity

archaeologists represent the mound 'as a mountain and the four sf reams they give various interpretations. Mt. Zion and the four streams which flow tlierefrom 'the four rivers of Paradise flowing from

supplies fervent zeal.

"Modem Roman

not a rock,

and

to

it

'

The Cross
Over the tribune
in S.

in

Early Christian Art.


in Classe, at

163
a

Apollinare

Ravenna,
is

is

gemmed
Apoiunare

cross placed in a medallion of stars.

Here the Cross "


and

Christ under
s.

the figure of the gibbet on which

He

suffered." as pointed
the--i

out by the inscription IX(~)T2,


i.1.

sa/tis juiindi

and

ciasse.

On

either side of the medallion are


is

Moses and
M.

Elias,

showing that

the scene inteiuL-d to be represented

that of the Transfiguration.

The

number
and

of the stars

is

ninety-nine, and

l.acroix, the clcrc-iiational

historical correspondent at

Rome, thinks
of "
JList

that the
in

number may be
relation to

intended to refer to the number


there
is

persons,

whom
'

less

jov

in

Paradise than at the conversion of a single sinner."


;

Tiie next ornamentation was the crown

although this

is

connected

generally with the crucifix rather than the naked cross, yet
place to treat of
it

it is

more

in

here.

God claimed
in

the crown as an
Crowned Cross.

ornament of honor to be used


that the mitre of the
of

His service, commanding

High

Priest should be decorated with this insignia

power (Ex. xxxix., 30, 31).' One of the earliest, if not the earliest mention of a crown was that of Rabbah, King of the Am- Earliest Mention
monites
his

which
(i

David took from


,

his

head and placed upon


it

of a

Grown,

own

Chron. xx.

2).

Among

pagan nations

was

at first a sacred

emblem.
the gods.'

Pliny says that the ancients had no ci'own except that gix'en to

Saturn was

first

thus honored

then Jupiter, after conquering


streams which issue from that one

the nuniiitnin wliich

designates

the Church,'

the four

head of waters, over which Peter presides,' Siveriini a dilTerent interpretation, and one
century).
'

etc.

Paulinus of Nola gives in his epislola

XJJ mi
:

in

accordance with the Fathers of his day (fourth

In describing the mosaic vaulted roof of a church which he has built, he says

Rignuin

ct triiiinphiiin

purpura

et

palma imiicant

Petram

superstat ipse Pt'tra EccUsia^

Ex qua
'

sonori qiiatluor
,

fantes meant^
and from
this

EvangcKstce viva Christi Jliwiina.'

The

purple and the palm are signs of royal estate and of triumph.
is

is

He who
One

Himself the Rock of the Church

Standing upon a rock go forth four voiceful streams.

Teslimony of the Catacombs, p. S2. and .Symbolism, Rev. R. St. Tyrwhitt (who is endorsed by Ruskin) regards the four streams as the rivers of Baptism the lambs represent the
Evangelists, the living Rivers of Christ.'"
of the latest writers on Christian Art
;

Marriott,

Christian flock, while the stags are the outer Gentiles desiring baptism.

Clirislian

Art and

Symbolism, p. 123. Didron, Christian Iconography, vol.


'

i.,

p. 397.

"

It is to this cross
' :

surrounded with stars


Splcndidior cunctis

that the exclamation of the

Emperor Heraclius might apply


is

O Crux

Aslrii

" This personification of Christ Christian Art and SyvihoHsm, p. 125.


!' "
-'

repeated

till

the seventh century."

Tyrwhitt,

The Ark

of the Covenant. Ex. xxv., 11

The Table
to

.\lt;ir

of Incense, Ex. xxx., 3,

were commanded

of Shew Bread, Ex. x-vv., 24 The have a crown of pure gold, probably a raised
;

ornamental border.

Pliny, lib. xvi., cap. 4.

The Cross

in I^arly Christian

Art

i6=

the Titans; Juno wore a \ine branch; Heracles sometimes was garhuulecl
witli poplar,

sometimes with wild

olive,

sometimes with parsley; Apolh/s


';

coronet was laurel, and that of Hacchus, i\y


ians

hence some early Christ-

were scrupulous
the use
of

about

the

crown, when e\'en a chaplet

of

herbs or

flowers
;

might be perverted
the

hut

words of

S.

I'aul.

Hut we see Jesus

who

was matle

little
.

lower

than the angels

crowned with glory and


honor; that he
grace of
b_\-

the

God
91,

should taste

death
(Mel),

for
ii.,

every

man
to

were soon
the

ai)[)Iied

literally

belo\ed symbol of our


Lord.

There are three forms


under which the crowned
cross
is

given.
I

The

first
of
,

seems inap-

Forms
^he

propriately Crowned
classed here,

Cross.
First,

but
ser

it is

done

so

by Gret;

and by Bosio

it

is

simply a cross surrounded by a nimbus. This, according to tradition, was


the
celebrated
Cross Surmounted by Crown.

miracu-

From

Bosio's

La Trioiifaute

t'

Gloriosa Croce.

lous cross of S.
is

said that

animals for
'

Thomas in Malabar, which is spoken of elsewhere." It when Julian the Apostate was once inspecting the viscera of The Emdi\-ination. the Cross thus surrounded appeared.
Df
of

Tertullian,

Corona,
its

vii.
iii.,

For account

miraculous change of color and dropping blood, see part

chap.

viii.

66

History of the Cross


was assuaged by the augurs, who declared that the nimbus
religion

peror's terror

was not a crown of glory, but a sign that the Christian bound and circumscribed."

was

The second form

also belongs to the crucifix.

In this, the crown

is

placed above the cross, often


The Second Form.

held by a hand,
/. r.
,

the

first

per-

son of the Holy Trinity


in

as

the exquisite mosaic in the

tribune of San Clemente, at

Rome.

Doubtless this

mode
from

of representation arose

the custom of the triumphs


in

Rome.

Then

the attend-

ant held the laurel crown above

the head of the victorious general,

but the wreath was not


rest

permitted to

on

his brow.
like

The
Angel Changing Crown of Thorns
for

third

form,

the

Real Crown.

former, appertains to the crucifix.

From Jameson's History of Our Lord.


a

It is

the substitution of

crown of gold and gems

in place of that of thorns.

The symbol
Even

of

The Third
^'''"-

humiliation and suffering" exchanged for that of power and


royalty.

This

is

one of the

earliest variations.

in

the Catacombs are instances of the crown of thorns exchanged for one
of flowers.
'

S,

Gregory Naz., Contra Julian

; Gretser,
;

Dc

Crucc,

lib. ii.,

cap. II.
lib. vi,,

Gretser,

Dc

Crnce,

lib. ii.,

cap. II

Bosio, Trionfantc Croce,

cap. II.

CHAPTER
THE CRUCIFIX
IX

II

EARLY CHRISTIAN' ART


tlie

FROM
this

what

\vc

have learned respecting the conceahnent of

Cross

in tiie

primitive Church,

we

are not surprised at the absence

of the crucifix in the early ages. '

omission.

There were reasons for Why the CruciDoubtless, one was the influence of the fix was not used
in

Jewish converts,

who

Early Ages.

retained their abhorrence of images,

fearing idolatry in representative art.'


to tlieir objections,

Therefore, the Gentiles yielded


rule enforced, that
if

and so vigorously was the


artist,

convert had been previously an


after his profession of faith,

and continued

in his handicraft

he was considered an apostate, and was

denied baptism.

Again,

the

same reason which induced the

early

Christians to veil the Cross under such symbols as the Fylfot and Tau,

because they were already familiar to the pagans, influenced them to


represent the sacrifice of our Lord under the guise of

some well-known
spirit

type from the Old Testament.


erful,

Another reason, perhaps the most pow-

was the

spirit

of

the primitive Church

the
'

of charity.

This charity was shown


believers were

even towards the persecutors.


it

The

early

men

" of

whom

may

be truly

said,

the world was not

worthy

'

amid mockings and scourgings, bonds and imprisonments,


slain

destitute, afflicted, tormented, tempted,

with the sword, stoned,


revenge has expressed

sawn assunder, not a thought


itself

of bitterness, or

in

sculpture

or

painting during three

centuries

not

single

instance has been recorded of the tortures and

martyrdoms which have

furnished such endless subjects for the pencil in later ages.


'

Even the
;

"

AH makers

of

images were turned from their (the Jews) commonwealth

for not a

painter or statuary was admitted, their laws wholly forbidding them, lest any occasion should be

given to dull men, or that their mind should be turned from the worship of

God

to earthly things

by these temptations."

Origen contra Celsus,


ii.,

p.

iSr,

ed.

163S, quoted in

Jeremy Taylor's

Dissuasive from Popery, book

sec. 6.

167

68

History of the Cross


by the Cross borne
;

sufferings of Christ are alluded to merely


his

lightly in

hand, as a sceptre of power rather than a rod of affliction


all
is

the agony,
in

the crown of thorns, the nails, the spear, seem


ness of joy brought
b_\"

forgotten

the ful-

His Resurrection.
in

This

the theme, Christ's


in their

Resurrection, and that of the Church


peculiar language, the artists of the
expatiating.

His person, on which,

Catacombs seem never weary


victory,
is

of

Death swallowed up

in

and the victor crowned

with the amaranth wreath of immortality,

the \'ision ever before their

eyes, with a vividness of anticipation which


this belief can but feebly realize."
'

The

Crucified

we who have been born to One prayed " Father,

forgive

them," hence

his followers, cherishing the

memory

of the instru-

ment

of his Passion as a .symbol rcmintling

them

of the altar

on which

the sacrifice for the sins of the whole world had been offered, were unwilling,
b)'

too

literal

a representation of that sacrifice, to foster any

feeling that sav^ored of bitterness.


It

was acknowledged by the

earl\-

Church that some representation


through the eye as well as through
it

was needed
the ear.

for the teaching of truths

Therefore a symbolic one was chosen, and, naturally,


in

was

the one so often dwelt upon

the Scriptures

the

Lamb.

It

was the

type hallowed

in the first

recorded sacrifice; ordained the Paschal sym-

bol of the Saviour in Egypt; foreseen " dumb before his shearers," " led to the slaughter " and by Isaiah; recognized by S. John Baptist;

in

accepted by our Blessed Lord Himself, and revealed, as standing before


the throne in the

Day

of

Judgment,

the apocalyptic vision of S.

John.
It

cannot be determined

how

early ths
says,

symbol was used.

Paulinus,

Bishop of Nola, circa A.D.


Symbol

400,

" Beneath

the bloody Cross

stands Christ
of the

in

the form of a snow-white

Lamb
A.D.

consigned
324, the

Lamb and
the Cross.

to unmcritcd death."

In the apse of the old basilica of S.

Peter's at

Rome, founded by Constantine,


is

lamb stood

at the foot of the Cross, a chalice at its breast, into


it

which
in

probably the blood was flowing, although


rude engraving of Ciampini."
in the

not so represented
still

the
is

An

early example,
at

in

existence,

Church of SS. Cosma and Damiano,


is

Rome,

A.D. 530.

Here

the lamb
'

reposing at the foot of the Cross.'


vol.
i.,

Lindsay, Christian Art,

p.

50.
.\iii.

Ciampini, Wt.

A/oiii., torn,

iii.,

tab.

'

Ibid., torn,

ii.,

tab. xv.

J)

170

History of the Cross


fearing lest in the simple type

The Church, however,

men would

not sufficiently honor the antitype, decreed in the Quinsextan Council, generally known as that " in Trullo," A. D. 691 " That the representa:

tion in

human form

of Christ our

God, who takes away the

sin of the
'

world, be henceforth set up and painted in place of the ancient lamb."

The lamb was sometimes


crucifix, as

retained and added to the reverse of the actual


In the Cross of Mayence,

on

the stational cross of Velletri.

the lamb

is

on one side

of the tree, the crucified

form on the other.


before this time.

But the crucifix, in sculpture or painting, was

known

We

are told that the palace of Constantine

was adorned with representaPelagius


I.

tions of sacred subjects, including one of the Crucifixion.''

(A.D. 555-559), being charged with having been accessory to the exile of
his predecessor Vigilius,

took a disculpator}- oath, holding over his head

a crucifix

and the Gospels.'

Venantius Fortunatus, about A.D. 560,


relief,

alludes to a representation in

probabl}' metallic:

Crux

bciiiJiita iiitit Doiiiiiius

qua canic

'

picpoiidit.

*
'

little

later

occurs what has been considered the

first

authentic

mention of a
Earliest Mention of Crucifix Generally Received.
Earliest Extant.

crucifix,

by Gregory

of

Tours (Bishop

.\.r).

575-595), at
as

Narbonne.

This was on painted cloth, but,


still

we

shall

show, there were


ing extant

earlier

examples.

The

earliest paint-

is
,

in

a Syriac Eva)igcliariuni,

date A.D.

586,

written at
later

/agba

^,

, ^

Mesopotamia, purchased nine centuries


Florence, where
it

by the Medici

for their library at

is

still
is

pre-

served as one of the choicest jewels.


in a

The

figure of our

Lord

robed
other

purple tunic reaching to the ankles, and sleeveless.


its

Among

proofs of

antiquity, note that the soldiers are not drawing lots, or

casting dice, for the seamless robe, but playing at


gers for
it.

Mora with the

fin-

This game

is

familiar in Italy at the present day.

On

the

cruets of Monza, the gifts of Gregory the Great in the sixth century, are

exhibited the head of Christ with a cruciform nimbus, and a cross flowering.

In another representation of this time Christ appears with ex-

tended arms, the cross being wanting, while the thieves are bound to
'

Canon

82.

' ^

Milman, Hist, of

Christianily, vol.

iii.,

p. 575.

Alios, Biblioth., no. 62, quoted in Lea's Siipcrstitiini

ami

Force, p. 2i.

In
is

tlie

poem Dc

Passione Domini, attributed to Lactantius (third and fourth centuries) a crucifix

described, but
lib. ii., 3.

owing

to its doubtful authenticity

it is

not cited.

Carm.,

U
.a

172
stakes.'

History of the Cross

On

the pectoral Cross of Monza, of the same period, the actual


in

cross

is

given

enamel.

At

first,

the crucifix was simply sketched in

outline, then the figure

was painted upon


the time of
it

wooden
in

cross

but

in

III.,

the ninth century,

Leo became a

bas-relief.

The development of the crucifi.x was gradual. At first the bust of our Lord
was placed upon the top
Development
the Crucifix.
i

of the

^f

Cross, as

it

appears

n an Evaiigcliarii/m

of the sixth century, in the Lib-

rary of Munich."
is

similar one

represented in the Church of

S.

Stefano at Rome, which was

probably part of the great market built


as a church

by Nero, consecrated
Ciampini assigns

A.H. 467.

A.D. 645 as the date of the mosaics.^


It
is

probable that the canon of the

Council " in Trullo " was almost immediate,= Crucifix in .t the


-

Iv -

obeved, for Raoul Rochette


'

Catacombs.

assigus the close of the seventh

century as the time of the earliest appear-

VO
Early

ance of the

crucifix.*

The
this

sole

example
is

Form

of Crucifix

From

MS
Lord.

^ound
erally

in

the Catacomb of S. Julius


to

gen-

of

Vlth Century.

attributed

time,

although

From Jameson's History of Our


to belong to the
'

Lady Eastlake says it is by some considered eleventh century. At first, the figtu-e of our Lord was
vol,
ii.,

Hisl. of

Our Lord,
ii.,

p. 167.

''

Lbid., vol.

p.

320.

Lady Eastlake

gives the following account of a pectoral cross,

it, was presented by the Emperor Justin (elected emperor .\.D. 519) to the Pope of that period, Gregory II. Here the Agnus Dei, the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, stands in the centre, with the bust-length figure of our Lord in the act of benediction occupying the upper end. Below is a figure believed to be John

" which, according to an ancient inscription on

the Baptist, while, with a profane presumption which only the abject exaltation of the Eastern

emperors can account


transverse ends."
crated until A.D. 715.
^

for, the figures of p. 321.

Justin and his wife Flavia Eufemia, are placed at the


is

//'/(/.,

There
ii..

some mistake
tab. xxxii.

here, as Gregory II.

was not conseetc., p. 60.

Ciampini,

I'ft.

Moii., vol.

p.

in,

Rochette, Discours,

The
vested
this
in

Crucifix in liarly Christian Art


Ijut

a sleeveless tunic extending from the neck to the feet;


case, as in an exquisite crucifix,
'

was not always the

once

in posses-

sion of the
this

Hohenlohe Siegmaringen instance the Saviour is very young

family, the tunic has sleeves.


;

In

there are no wounds, no nails,


face,

no

suppidaiiciiui,

nothing to suggest suffering; the placid

" fairer

than the children of men." and the outstretched arms only speak of
the all-embracing
love
thereal-

which

prompted
awful

sacrifice; its

ity

is

onh' intimated by
the

the instrument of
Passion,

upon
rests."

which

the Lord
In

the

eighth

and

ninth centuries the feet


are fastened with nails,

the hands outstretched


as in the act of benedic-

tion or prayer, yet generally


free.
is

At times

this

reversed, the

hands are fastened, and


the feet, woundless, are

supported on the suppcda)tcuin.

The

faith-

ful

attendants,

the
S.
Crucifix

blessed Virgin

and

John, exhibit fortitude

Found in the Catacomb of Pope Julius. From Jameson's History of Our Lord.

and submission which

mark the symbolic character

of early art, so different from the literal rend-

ering of grief and despair delineated in later ages; the sun and moon,

which often heretofore have been personified driving


the one drawn with horses, the other with oxen,

their chariots,
little

now appear

more

than a radiated orb and a crescent, their names frequently written


perpentlicularl}- according to
'

Greek
;

art.

On some

of the carved ivories


,

Hist,

of Our Lord,

vol.

ii., ii,,

p. 153
p.

Xolcs

and

Queries, 3d ser.

p.

392

'

Hist, of

Our

Lord. vol.

330.

174

History of the Cross

the Evangelists are represented on the ends of the Cross with their

winged symbols whispering the inspired record


ings, their

to them."

On

paint-

symbols only are often given, a practice which came into


use about the sixth century.
in

The wound appears


ninth
'
;

the

or

tenth

century

sometimes an
in

opening made

the robe
it

showing
is

it.

Invariably
side,

on the right

for

two reasons;
that
is

first,

because

the place of power

and dignity; second, because of the typical allusion


art,

to

the Church.
is

In

Eve

always repre-

sented as drawn from the


right side of

Adam,

alle-

gorically teaching that the

Church receives her


Hohenlohe Siegmaringen
Crucifix.

life

from the wounded side


of her Saviour, thereafter

From Jameson's History of Our Lord.


to be espoused to

him and become the mother

of

all

living."'

Until the eleventh century Christ was almost always portrayed as


living,
'

and there are instances, generally


now

in

work

of

Byzantine origin,
Rammoon
as signifying the
reflected,

Hemans, describing the

ivory diptych presented by Agillruda to the monastery of

bano, A.D. 888 and


divine and
light.

preserved in the Vatican, explains the sun and

human

nature of Christ, the

one radiant througli

its

own, the other by

Ancient Christianily and Art,

p. 534.

Under

this

Cross are represented

Romulus and

Remus suckled by the wolf. An may best please them. Hemans


represented in
-

extraordinary association, which our readers can interpret as


thinks
it

an allusion to the victory of Christ over the empire

its

traditional origin.

The

crucifix in Aix-la-Chapelle, called that of Lothario, the son of

Charlemagne (died
to be certain.

A.D. 855) represents Christ as dead, with the

wound

in his side.

The
is

short loin cloth, drooping

body,

etc., would appear evidence of Our Lord, vol. ii., p. 329.


'

of a later date.

But

its

age

presumed

Hist,

I think that Heywood, somewhere in his Hierarchy Eve was taken from the left side of Adam, hence in the marriage service they stand " the man on the right hand, and the woman on the left." In the service of the holy Eucharist in the Greek Church, the priest "stabs" the " holy bread " on the right side, thus recognizing the commonly received tradition. Neale, Eastern Church, Intro-

Lindsay, Christian Art, vol.

i.,

p. 85.

of Angels,

refers to a tradition that

duction, p. 322.

See also engraving

in

King's Greek Church in Kussia.

The

Crucifix in Early Christian Art

1/5
that
is

as late as the twelfth century.

The

earliest

example

in painting,

extant, of Christ as dead, occurs in a fresco in S. Urbino above the valley of

Egeria, dateA.U. loi

i.'

There are still earlier instancesof

crucifixes, among

Back

of

Hohenlohe Siegmarinijen

Crucifix.

From Jameson's

History of

Our Lord.

which are two celebrated ones, one a pectoral cross described by Cardinal
Borgia, another the cross of Lothario, claimed to be of the ninth century."

The
times
'

skull at the foot of tlie

image appears about


in

this time;

some-

it

represents that of
places
it

Adam,

accordance with the tradition that


it
-

Hemans

about a.d, 1059. and believes " that


Hist,

scene, in painting, in any Italian church.

is the most ancient crucifi.'c, as a of Our Lord, vol. ii., p. 328.

176

History of the Cross


first

the Cross was placed over the resting-place of our


the blood of the Saviour raised

father,

and
early

him

to the second

life.

In

some

work Adam

rises and receives the blood in a chalice.'

The cup

alone

appears
The

in

the thirteenth

century.

Skull at Foot

^t Other timCS, the skuU


stands not for the father

of the Cross.

of all living, but simply denotes Gol-

gotha, " the place of a skull," the Syriac for Calvary, " the place of the

beheaded.

At
The

first

the feet of Christ upon

the Cross were represented as free,


Nails.

thcu bouud, aud then


nail.'

fastened severally with a

This

was

in

accordance with the tradition

that S. Helena discovered with the


Cross, four nails which
;

is

the

number

mentioned by
Early Pectoral Crucihx.

S.

Cyprian, S. Gregory
III.

From Jameson's

History of

Our Lord.

of

Tours,

and Innocent

At

Florence, in the thirteenth and four-

teenth centuries, Cimabue and Margaritone depicted the feet crossed and
pierced with a single
nail.

Jacobus de Voragine also records

this

change,

which Avala, Bishop

of Galicia,

denounced

as introduced

by the Albi-

genses, and therefore heretical.'

But to return

to the robe.

In the eleventh and twelfth centuries the robe becomes shorter, being

merely a tunic extending from the navel to the knees;


centurv
Crucifix in
it is

in

the thirteenth
it is

as short as possible,

and
.

in

the fourteenth

xith and xiith


Centuries.

only a '

roll of linen,

the

pcrizoiiiiDii,
,

enfolding the loins, a


this day.
ii.,
, . ,

wretched fashion which has continued to


'

An example
is

of the fourteenth century given in Hist,


;

of

Otir Lorii,yo\.

p. 208.

Didron

gives another

example

In the Lady Chapel of Beauvais, in a

window
;

of the thirteenth century,

Adam
his

a green mantle is thrown over hand upholds the cup receiving the blood. Christ. The color green, is symbolical of hope, charity, and regeneration. Icon., vol. i., p. 271. In his attack on relics, Calvin reckons up some sixteen or seventeen nails exhibited as genuine to this has been answered, that the Cross was composed of several pieces, and doubtBut of the four which fastened less many nails were used, some of which have been preserved.
depicted rising from the tomb at the foot of the Cross
loins.

head and around his

His

left

the sufferer, one was thrown by S. Helena into the Adriatic, and the other three, according to
Curtius, are preserved at
"

Rome, Milan, and Treves.

Dc

Clavis Dominicis., cap.

7.

Besides this alteration, the Albigenses are said to have painted the blessed Virgin with one

eye, in derision.

Lucas, Contra Albigenses, quoted by Jeremy Taylor, vol.

i.,

p. 327.

The
Some
^ r .K Crucifix with
artists

Crucifix in
still

I'.arlv

Christian Art

177

have gone

further aiul exhibited the revolting specrobe.'

tacle of the

image of the Crucified One without a


nude,

Christ, entirely

is

phiced opposite to Eleazar the High Priest, o 1


1 1

who

is

Nude

Figure.

sacrificing a red

expiation of the sins of

cow without the camp of the Hebrews in The man Jesus of Nazareth may the people.

Cross of Lothario.

(IXth Centur) J
is

Fri)iii

J.imeson\ History of Our Lord.


in

have had brown hair as

generally represented, but in this, as


character,
i.,

other

instances of a symbolic
'

owing to the implied association


The Hon. Robert Curzon
asserts that pre-

Didron, Christian Iconography, vol.

p. 259.

But there are exceptions ex. gr. the Cross of Lothario, that in the lower church of San Clemente at Rome, and It has been suggested that draped figures are always of others, which are only partially vested. Byzantine origin, and that the difficulty of correctly rendering the nude body, in the rude days Molanus records the legendary reason why of Christian art, was the reason for its being robed. In a vision the Lord appeared to an artist, and said, " All the Greek Church draped the body.
vious to the eleventh century the figure was always clothed with a robe.
;

ye are clothed with various raiment, and


clothing."

me ye show naked. Go forthwith and cover me with Not understanding the vision, the priest disregarded it. Whereupon, the third day, Christ visited him again, and having scourged him, said, " Have 1 not told you to cover me ? Go now and cover with clothing the picture in which I appear crucified." Molanus, Hist. Itnag. Sac, p. 420. Lord Lindsay notices as peculiar to Greek art that the waist-band is alw.ays
arranged in broad folds like an apron.
Christian Art, vol.
i.,

p. cji.

178

History of the Cross


tlie

between

two

sacrifices,

the hair and beard of Christ are red.

This

example may be unique.'

As

the thirteenth century approaches, the crucifix becomes more

degraded.
Crucifix in

There

is

not a shadow of the truth symboHzcd wlien,

in

purcr agos, art represented Christ as triumphant, even


humiliation, as a monarch, although throned

in his

xiiith Century,

upon

a cross.

presented the living sacrifice with outstretched arms eager to embrace the world in His Atonement; the God who said, " I have
is

No

longer

power

to lay

down my
of a

life,

and

have power to take

it

again," but

we

have a portraiture

dead man, Jesus, hanging by the hands, the face


austerities,

haggard with anguish, the frame emaciated by


till

attenuated

can be numbered, every nerve racked with agony, an attempt to embody the words of the Psalmist, " They pierced my hands
rib

every

and
17)

my

feet

may

tell

.ill

my

bones "

(Ps. .xxii.,

an

effort to realize the

unspeakable woe and

agony of the awful deed, without one glimpse


of the

might and majesty which illuminate even


artists.

the rude efforts of the early Christian

Nor was
ering and

this portrayal of literal physical suf-

indignit}' confined alone to earth, but

the " cruel anguish


to
Cross
in

is

even brought

sadden heaven.""
of
artists

Heaven.

Regardless
second
.Adam
al

the

commandment,

no
the

longer timidly represented


Foot of
tlie

God

Cross.

From Jameson's History of Our Lord.

Father under the reverent symbol of


the all-creating, all-protecting hand,

but as an old man, even when throned


his

in glory in

heaven, holding

in

hands the Cross bearing the distorted body


'

of the Son.
Didron thinks that he has
i.,

Heitres

du Due d'Anjoii,
brings to

p. 162.

Bibliotheque Royale, Paris.

seen a second example in Biblia Sacra, No. 6S29.

Christian fconog., vol.

p.

260.

The

" Red

Cow"
;

mind

Mohammedan

legend.

According to

it,

the animals admitted

into Paradise are, the prophet Saleb's

345, note E)

the

ram which Abraham

camel (which was born of a rock. Sale. Koran, vol. i., p. Moses' red cow whose ashes sacrificed in place of Isaac
;

he mingled with the waters of purification (here


to in the
;

we have

a reason for the

above tradition alluded

MS.) Solomon's ant (which, when all creatines in token of their obedience to him, brought him presents, dragged before him a locust, and therefore was preferred before all others, because it had brought a creature so much bigger than itself); the Queen of Sheba's parrot, who Katmir, carried messages between her and Solomon; Ezra's (Balaam's?) ass Jonah's whale the dog of the Seven Sleepers and Mahomet's camel. Thevenot, quoted in Southey's Omuiana,
; ;
;

vol.

i.,

p. 158.

'

Didron, Christ. Icon.,

vol.

i.,

p. 258.

The
In

Crucifix in liarly Christian Art


and fourlccnlh
CL-nturics the

179

tlic tliii'tecntli

mystic representations

in crucifixions, of tiie

sun and moon, earth and ocean, church and synain

gogue, give place to groups of angels indulging


ate grief

passion-

symbolism

in

unworthy
if

of those blessed beings,

who may
In

be

Ancient Art.

suppnscd,
tery of

lint tt)

understand, yet to have some insight into the mys-

God which

they were then beholding.

some

Crucifixions

angels are receiving in chalices the blood from the wounds.

A little

later

and the s}-mbolism of ancient

art

was put

aside,

and a female

figure per-

sonif\-ing the Cluiich receives from the side the sacred stream, water

and

blood, typical of the two sacraments.

The treatment of the crucifix and Crucifixion in later times is so well known that further description is needless. Tlie realistic has been sought for fiy the modern artist, forgetful that perhaps in doing so he was defeating the holy teaching of art. The ages which brought forth
'

saints

and

mart_\-rs,

were taught of their Lord's sufferings

b}'

no such

exhibition of mere anatomical kmiwlcdge of an outstretched, pendent

body

as painters

and sculptors now present.


well might

There are some things

beyond mere
the chisel.

digital skill,

even Mhen genius mixes the colors or guides

the artist attempt to portray the words " Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachtltaiii ! " as to embody the Sacrifice on Calvary.

As

The eyes
outline.

of this generation have not seen

it.

Men must
faith

be content to
fill

suggest, as did the

workmen

of old,
little

and

let

and love

up the
the

We

must go back a

to take

up the thread
of

of our history.

In

the earliest authentic

representations

the Crucifixion,

blessed Virgin and S. John are present.


right side ''(which ^

The

former, usually upon the


in

was turned to the north), yet

the earlv
.'

The Virgin Mary


and
s.

example

in

the Church of Monza, already alluded to, in

John at

the Cross.

which the thieves are fastened to stakes while Jesus stands


with arms uplifted, yet without a cross, the Virgin Mother
left.
is

upon the

Gretser also refers to a picture, said to have been in the possession


In
llie

'

attempt to obtain an actual representation of agony, Guido equalled Prometheus.


his

Having bound

model

to a cross, in his ecstasy

his death-throes to the canvas,

.\fraid of the consequences,

he stabbed the poor wretch, and transferred he fled. After some days the

studio was necessarily broken open, and the half-decomposed corpse and the painting were found.

Of course
^

the artist

was pardoned.

What was

the the life of a miserable

model compared with


" Our Good Lord

the fame of the painter?


In the Revelatiotis of the Anchoress of Norwich, Juliana, 1373, she says
:

looked down on the right side and brought to


Passion."

my mind

Revelations of Divine Love, etc.p.sS.

where our Lady stood in the time of his Rock, Church 0/ our Fathers, \6\.m., pt. i.

i8o
of Sophronius,

History of the Cross


Bishop of Jerusalem,
It

in

the seventh century, in which

she

is

so placed.

has been questioned whether the Virgin and S.


to stand on the left of the Cross, to accord with

John ought not both


Ps. cxlii., 4: "
I

looked on

my right

hand, and beheld, but there was no

man

that

would know me."


S.

According to Mrs. Jameson, when


of the Cross, " She
is

Mary

stands alone on the right

the idealized Mater Dolorosa, the daughter of


'

Jerusalem, the personified Church mourning for the great Sacrifice."

Modern
grief,

art,

treating the Crucifixion as a literal, dramatic scene, re-

presents the blessed Virgin as prostrate upon the ground, overcome with a mere

human mother; but such


example
of
faith

a position

is

unworthy

of her

who was
saw
his

to be an

and fortitude to the kindred of


are: "

future martyrs.

The words

of S.

John
the

When
etc.

Jesus therefore
is

mother and the

disciple standing

by,"

In this position

" Blessed
in

represented
Stabat

among women " the sublime hymn


dolorosa,

Mater

Juxta

eriieem lacrymosa,

Dull! pendebat fillus.

and
is

b}-

the early masters S.

Mary
if

invariablj' depicted standing,

not erect, yet supported by the


other Marys as
tegna."

given

by Man-

In the Italian Church, as devotion

was gradually drawn from the and

.Son to the mother, the attention

of the actors in the pictures,

the interest of the spectators, are


directed

more

especially to her.
is

Yet while the intention


Mary at the Cross. From Jameson's Legends of tlie Madonna.

to exalt

her as divine, the weakness of her

humanity

is

presented

for

the

blessed mother, unmindful of the prophetic warnings that a sword

would

pass through her


'

own

breast, forgetful of the celestial


p. 285.

power which she


p. 2S6.

Legends of the Madonna,

'In the Louvre, Ibid.,

The
hail

Crucifix in Early Christian Art

i8i

seen exhibited, sinks fainting, overcome with maternal anguish, a


at the foot of the

human mother,
I'larlier

Cross of her Son.

artists represent,

conventionally, the blessed Virgin and S.


Giotto's crucifix, over
is

Jiilm, at the

ends of the transverse of the Cross.


S.

the main entrance of


this work,
it

Marco's

in

Morence,

an example.
it.

It \vas

is

said,

which drew

all

Florence to sec

Uante alludes

to

it

in

his Purgatory.'

We

will note briefly a

few remarkable cruci-

fixions and crucifixes.

few years ago upon

the wall of a cell untler-

ncath the palace of the


Cffisars

on

the

Palatine
dis-

Hill

in

Rome, was
the
rutle

covered
gi\-en
in

sketch

the

engraving.

The
the
legio

portion of the plaster

was carefully removed to

museum

of the Col-

Romano, and
at
first

the
problas-

drawing was

nounced

to

be

phemous
old story

caricature,

the

that

the
ass,

Jews
and

worshipped

an

T
C
Anubis-Christos.

L
,V

the inscription AAEK:^amea(j2 febete TON QEON, "Alexander


worsiiips his

From

King's T/w Gnostics.

god," was supposed to be


is

in ridicule.

Mr. King, however,


gnostic, in the time

claims that
of

it

the

work

of

some deluded, yet pious


earlier, for

Septimus Severus, or perhaps

the bricks are of the time of

Hadrian.

The gems then worn

as talismans

and

signets,

show

that

Egyptian mythology was mingled with the doctrines of the heretical


sects in the early ages of Christianity.
taglios
is

frequent symbol on the in-

the jackal-headed god Anubis, often bearing the caduceus of


it

Hermes
cross, or

(which,

will

be remembered, was formed from the Egyptian


his office of

Tau) to designate
'

conducting departed souls to


ix.,

Divine Comedy, Purg., canto

91-96.

i82
their final rest in the

History of the Cross


Pleroma;
at other

times holding the palm of

vic-

tory for the triumphing faithful, or again presiding over the Psychostasia,
or weighing of the soul, thus symbolizing Christ in his deliverance of

Nor is the first office merely intimated, but on some Greek gems, Hermes, armed with the caduceus, assists the souls in Hades, as Christ with his Cross is represented by
souls in Hades,

and the

final

judgment.

mediaeval artists delivering souls from Limbus.

The
we
find

jackal's
it

head might

easily bo mistaken for tliat of an ass,

believed by

some

of the heathen, that the

new

sect

" which

and

they heard everywhere spoken against,"


being our God
but
this City

did worship such a deity. TertuUian writes: " For some of you have dreamed of an ass's head
;

a suspicion of this sort Cornelius Tacitus hath introduced


a

now [Rome]

new

report of our

God

hath been lately set forth

in

since a certain wretch hired to cheat the wild beasts,


title as this,
'

put forth a picture with some such


ians conceived of an ass.'

The God
"

of the Christ-

This was a creature with

ass's ears,

with a
Christ-

hoof on one

foot,'

carrying a book and wearing a gown."

The

ians transferred the charge against the wliole body, to the Gnostics.

Epiphanius,

in

the fourth

centur_\',

asserts that the Gnostic


ass,

Sabaoth

'

had, according to some, the face of an

according to others, that of a


to eat swine's flesh.

hog, on which account


'

it

was forbidden

But

in

The Empusa,

or

midday Hecate, had one

ass's foot.

'

TertuUian, Apology, xvi.

Selden conjectures that

this notion arose

among

the Gentiles

from the law enjoining the redemption, with a lamb, of the firstlings of an ass, quoted by Bishop Com. on Kx., xiii., 13. Patrick. ' " Now Sabaoth being held by all these sectaries as the national god of the Jews, it is very probable that in the same confusion of two beasts, originated that belief so prevalent amongst

the Ancients and quoted by

'I

acitus {Hist., v., 4), that the secret object of worship so jealously

guarded within the sanctuary * at Jerusalem was the image of this animal (the wild ass), by the guidance of which they had relieved their thirst and distress, Moses having, by the observation of a troop of them, found out the springs that saved the congregation from perishing in the
wilderness.

Again

in the spurious gospel,

T/ie
is,

Genealogy of

Mary,

f the cause assigned for the

Temple, he beheld standing within the sanctuary a man with the face of an ass and when he was rushing out to cry unto Woe unto you whom do ye worship?' he was strnclc dumb by the apparition. the people, But afterwards when he had recovered his speech and revealed the vision to the Jews, they slew him as a blasphemer. And they assign as tlie reason why the High Priest had bells fastened around the hem of his garment, in order that this monstrous deity might, by their tinkling, be warned of his approach, and so have time to conceal himself." King, Gnostics, p. gi.
death of Zacharius, the son of Barachias
that going into the
;
' !

This story is connected with the belief that Bacchus was the real god of the Jews, for the ass was sacred to Bacchus. For this reason Pliny (cxx.wi.) assigns a curious reason, that " the ass was fond of fennel, a poison to all other beasts, but a plant sacred to the god of wine." It was ascribed to S. t " This quotation is preserved by Epiphanius, for the work itself is entirely lost. Matthew and was taken for their authority by the Collyridians, so-called from their sacrificing cakes to the Virgin Mary. The .5/rM {^^Tl/rtry, still extant, is of a totally different character."
*
. .

The

Crucifix in liarly Christian Art


it

183

wliatevcr spirit this rude graffito was made,

is

a valuable testimony to

the belief of the Church in the second and third century in the Divinity
of Christ.

Even

if,

as at first supposed,
it

it

is

the w ork of a heathen, in

contempt

of Christiaiiit)-, \'et

is

an e\'idence thai Christians acknow-

ledged and worship[)ed Christ as God.


are read, they testify that the Christ
tical witli

And w lun the heathen whom the Jews crucified


head
of an ass.

traditions

was iden-

their Gotl

who was

worshipi)etl in the temple, of


hatl the

whom

the

heathen blasphemously reported he

One

of the earliest, perhaps the earliest, representations of the Cruciis

fixion extant,

that discovered,

in

iiS63,

in

the old Church of San


Crucifixion in

Clementc
which

at

Rome
is

underneath the more modern building.


church of San Clemente.

itself

ancient, having been erected in the ninth


Di'.

century.
Irish

The Reverend

Mullooly, the Prior of the

Dominicans, to whose zeal we owe the excavation of the lower


si.xth

church, considers the frescos as the work of the

century, 516 A.D.


nails,

The Saviour
in his side; the

is

represented as

ali\'e,

unfastened by

no wound

arms are extended

at right angles

from the body; the

head, surrounded by a cruciform nimbus, droops to the right; the beard


is

short and

fine,

and the countenance expresses no suffering.


is
it

The
is

tablet for the Title


inscription, probably

affixed to the Cross, but tliere

is

no trace of an

has

been obliterated by time.

The

tunic

short, reaching

from the loins to the knees, a marked exception to the

crucifixes of a little later period.

The
S.

blessed Virgin stands with her


roll
'

hands extended towards her son, and


in his left

John holds the

of his Gospel

hand, while he points with the other to his Divine master.


in

The

earliest Crucifixion

mosaic, on record, unfortunately

it

is

no

longer in existence, was that constructed by order of Pope John VII.,


A.D. 706.
says, "
it

Curtius" thus describes

it:

" Until lately," he

crucifix in

was to be seen
is

in

the old Basilica of S. Peter, in

a.d.
is
if

706.

the Chapel in which

preserved the Veronica."

Our Lord
the side.

reprein

sented as

alive,

the arms extended, but the hands drooping as

the

act of benediction,
less tunic

no sign

of suffering,

no wound

in

sleevein

drapes the form to the ankle, like the crucifix found


of

the

Catacomb
'

Pope

Julian.

In

the engraving given in Ciampini,' an


symbol of
,i

The

distinction

between

tlie roll ,is a

prophet, and a book, that of an apostle,

is

not always marked in early


-

art.
p.

Curtius,

De

Clavis Domiiiids,
torn,

56.

Ciampini, Vet. Men.,

iii.,

p. 75, tab. xxiii.

184

History of the Cross


who
arose from their graves (here

angel appears assisting those saints

placed near the Cross) at Christ's Resurrection (S. Matt, xxvii., 52-53).

One

of the oldest crucifixes

which has been handed down to


According to
tradition,
'

us, is

the celebrated Volto Santo at Lucca.'

it

was

carved ^^ Santo The Volto ^


,

out of cedar

at

Lucca.

angelic assistance in finishing the face.

wood by Nicodemus, who received ^ Hence the name,

"

J'o/to Sd/ito
it is

di

Lucca"

in

medijeval Latin, " Viiltinn dc Luca," and

therefore

classed

among

those likenesses of Christ which, being con-

sidered miraculous, were called Achicropioctcs, "


like the Veronica, the portrait of Jesus sent by

made without hands,"


him
to Abgarus,

and

History preserves the solemn those attributed in part to S. Luke.' William Rufus, " Per vultcin dc Luca," which has been by some oath of
wrongfully translated " by the face of
S.

Luke."

This crucifix
legend,
is
it

is

apparently of Byzantine origin, but, according to


its

its

was miraculously brought to

present shrine in A.D. 782.

It

preserved in a temple of costly marbles, erected by Matteo Civitali

in

1484, within the

Duomo

at

Lucca, and

is

exhibited thrice a year for


is

public devotion.

Before the door of the temple

suspended a lamp of

gold, weighing twenty-four pounds, a votive offering of the Lucchese in


1836, to avert a visitation of the cholera.

Dante alludes to

this crucifi.x,

when

in the eighth circle of


"(?///

Malebolge the public defaulters are punished.


'

non ha

liiogo il sail to volto.

'

From
ticity

Curtius,

who

firmly believed in the genuineness

and authen-

of this crucifix,
friar,
?

we condense the

following account:

"Who,"

says the worthy

" will dare to doubt that Nicodemus represented

truly the Crucifixion

He who drew
erred

out and received the nails in his


so often

own hands, can he have


kiss
?

who was

embraced with a

sincere,

Who

lavished his silver in procuring the


?

myrrh and aloes

for the

embalming
this

of Jesus

And

the Lucchese declare that they have received


secret, yet

image from their remote ancestry, as the work of the


Describing the image, Curtius says,
'"

true believer."
'

that the Saviour

Curtius,

De

Clavis Dominich, p. 3S, Bosio, p. 6S5.


of Kulgaria,

Sabinus,

King

sequence of the Iconoclastic movement numbers of

provoked a rebellion by an attempt to abolish images. In conGregory II. artists fled from Greece to Italy.

opened asylums for them, and in the ninth century, under Paschal I., the Eastern school produced the pictures of the Madonna, now dark with age, which in many instances are ascribed to The Volto Satito is supposed to be the work of one of these artists. Walcott. Sncrea S. Luke. ' Divine Comedy, Inf., canto xxi. Archccology p. 323.

The

Crucifix in Early Christian Art

185

appears alive, not endued with the pallor of death; that his hair and
beard were of a hazel color.

The
is

tunic

is

of the

blackwool of China,

embroidered with the Phrygian needle, which also added beauty and
value to the girdle.

The

crciwn

ui

pure gold [doubtful at present]


of the

worthy a king, and the sandals encrusted with plates


metal.

same pure
is

Concerning these sandals, the following rare thing


certain poor

written.

There was a

man who,

driven to extremity

by hunger, im-

plored the aid of the V0//0 Sa/i/o.

To

his prayer, the image, or rather

Christ in the image, inclined Himself, and threw to the beggar his shoe
as an alle\'iation to his great misery.

The poor wretch was about

to

depart from the church


in

w'itli

his treasure, but the keepers of the

temple

admiration of the miracle redeemed the shoe with an equivalent of

gold, but they were unable to return the sandal to the foot of the image,

hence

it

is

supported

b}'

the chalice."

'

As

there are

many

pictures ascribed to S. Luke, so there are divers

crucifixes attributed to

Nicodemus.

One
at

is

preserved in the

Duomo

of

Palermo.
Syria.
,,
,

Another was formerly


Bishop Jewell,
tlie latter,

Berytus (Beyroot),
Harding,
other Crucifixes Ascribed to Nicodemus.

in
.

his controvers}- with


,

alludes to

quoting the tradition that


at his
in

.....

it

was made

by Nicodemus, and

death given to Gamaliel, the teacher of S.


succession to James, Simon, and Zaccheus.
it

Paul, and bequeathed

Having been preserved


tus,

a long time in Jerusalem,

was carried to Bery-

where, being discovered by the Jews, they crowned it with thorns, made it drink " esel and gall," and " sticke it to the heart with a
speare,"

whence "

issueth

blood
is

in

great

quantity;

the powers of

heaven are shaken; the sun


etc'

darkened, the

moon
in

loseth her light,"

Perhaps this
cil

may
is

be the very image mentioned

the second Coun-

of Nice, .\.D. 787.

In the course of the iconoclastic controversy a

Somewhere also in Spain the Capuchins exhibit a rival crucifix as the only one made by Nicodemus.'' The genuineness of another curious crucifix is vouched for by Frate Curtius. He says it was sent by the Bishop of Jerusalem to Leo the
similar miracle

narrated.'

'

Curtius,

'

Jewell,

Df Chvis Domiiiicis, cap. Works, p. 372, ed. 161 1.

5.

Stirling,

Landon, Manual of Councils. iA Nicea. Annals of the Artists of Spain, vol.

i.,

p.

24

see also infra, part

iii.,

chap,

viii.,

for other miracles.

86

History of the Cross


It

Great about A.D. 450.

was neglected
' '

till

Sergius

I.,

690, " honored

it

and exalted
Crucifix sent to

it

for the

adoration of the

Roman
g_ ,^^ g_

people and that of the


plates of the purest
..

whole world.
g^jj_

The Cross is covered with


^j^^

Leo the Great.

g__.j^^^,

^j^j^

j_

^^^

^j^^.

^j^j.^^

human

figures representing the


fix are S. Paul, S.

most holy Trinity.

On

the right of the cruci-

are S. Peter, S.
is

Mary Cleophas, and the blessed Virgin. On the left Mary Magdalene, and S. John; at the foot of the Cross
Basil

the skull of death upon Calvary which Christ conquered by dying.

Below are the two Greek Fathers, SS.


holy Trinity. "

and Chrysostom, who over-

threw, in royal and golden letters, the heretics


'

who opposed

the most
is

It

is

needless to observe, that the figure of Christ

apparently of late work.

As

to the three figures claimed to personify

the Trinity, the absence of the nimbus would disprove the claims; besides, the First

Person was indicated by the symbol of the hand until

the thirteenth or fourteenth century,

when by degrees

first

the face,

then the bust, and at length the entire person was displayed.''
In the Church of S. Patriarcale, once one of the principal churches
in

Venice,

but

now almost
is

deserted,

the tombs of the

many
its
is

early walls

patriarchs of the
Black Crucifix.

Queen

of the Adriatic

within
figure

forgotten,

also a curious crucifi.x.

The
is

draped,
it

but the face, which

is

visible, is black.'

The
'

effect

unpleasant, yet

involuntarily recalls to one's recollection Fuller's quaint definition of a

negro

" The image of God cut


its

in ebonj-. "

At Melrose
celebrated for
Black Rood
of Melrose.
"^^

there was another crucifix of black marble, which


sanctity.
Sir

was
ap-

Walter Scott mentions

it

in his

Eve of

The ladv meets the spirit J'-^l'"pears as when he lived, not knowing

of her lover,

who

that he had been slain

by her husband,
'

and urges an interview on the following night:


i.,

Curtius,

De

Clavis Dominicis^ p. 50.


p.

''

Didron, Christ. Icon., vol.

210.

the Father under a

human form
p. 340.

occurs in a

Lady Eastlake thinks the first representation of MS. of S. Dunstan, who died A.D. 90S. Hist, of

Our

Lord, vol.

ii.,

Hargrave Jennings speaks of the embodiment of Deity under darkness, and instances the Virgin and Child in black images in the chapels of S. Peter
Continental Ecclesiologv.

'Webb,
S.

Maria Maggiore at Rome, S. Francisco at Pisa, and S. Stephen in Genoa. The RosiI do not remember a single one of them. Perhaps Mr. Jennings may have seen some of the dark pictures ascribed to S. Luke, of which there is one at Scala Santa at Rome, and many elsewhere on the Continent. The King of the Hervey Islands, part of Cook's Archipelago in the Pacific Ocean, has a crucifix painted black, the gift of a missionary in 1857. His majesty has probably the same opinion as that of some of the African tribes, who represent the devil as white.

and

cruiians, p. 165.

''

The
"

Crucitix in Early Christian Art


shall not sound,

187

And I '11 chain the bloodhound, and the warder And rushes shall be strewed on the stair
;

So by the black rood


I
I

stone,

and by holy
be there
!

onjurc thee,
iif

my

love, to

S. "

John,

Tile potency

the adjuration

is

sliown by her ghostly lover's confessing

wlien he appears in her apartment,


''

But

had not had power to come

to thy
'

bower,

Had'st thou not conjured In Florence are two rival crucifixes, that repetition seems almost
needless.

me

so."

whose

histories are so well


in

known

One, now

the Church of
Crucifixes of

Santa Croce,

is

by Donatello.
it

The

artist in

the pride of his

heart exhibited
told

to his intimate friend Brunelleschi,

who
,,

Donateiioand
Brunelleschi.

him

that he had " placed a peasant

upon

tlie

Cross.
if

Donatello angrily bade the

critic to e.xcel

the work,

possible.

Some
at the

time

after, Brunelleschi invited his friend to dine,

but begged him to go

to the market and purchase


studio.

some

viands, while he awaited

him

Donatello, ha\'ing accom[)lished his errand, hastened to the

studio,

and opened the door.

Brunelleschi had accepted the challenge,

and the work stood before him.

Poor Donatello

let fall his

apron

filled

with eggs and cheese for their dinner, and magnanimously exclaimed.

To you
ants."^

is

given the power of carving Christs, to


latter crucifix
its
is

me

that of peas-

The

in the

Church

of S.
is

Maria Novella, but

the very means taken for

preservation

it

under glass

prevents

it

from being seen


'

satisfactorily.

Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border. I'he superstition that some evil s]iirits cannot cross the threshold of a house unless aided by liuman power, is referred to by Coleridge, when Christabel
brings in Geraldine
:

"

The lady

sank, belike through pain,

And
Over

Christabel with might and main

Ijifted her up, a

weary weight.
;

the threshold of the gate

Then the lady arose again. And moved, as she were not

in

pain."

Vasari, Life

of Conatello.

CHAPTER

III

MONOGRAMS OF OUR LORD

THE
was held

monogram
as a
it

of our blessed

Lord was venerated by the early


of the Cross, and, like that sign,
Value and Antiquityofthe

Church equally with the sign


sacred
^^

symbol among the pagan nations

long before

was consecrated by Christian adoption.


f.

The
-t

monograms

of Usiris

and Jupiter

Ammon
is

Monogram.
is

are snnilar to

those of Christ.'

Sometimes the Rho

reversed, or a circle

placed in

?
Identity of

6
>.

Heathen and Christian Symbols.

From

Jennings's T/te Rosicrucians.

From

Jennings's T/u- Rosicnicinns.

one of the angles of the

cross.
is

In a coin of one of the Ptolemies, as

previously stated, the figure

supposed by Gretser to be a contraction

Dp
K
Monogram
of

Cr

I3
Monogram
of the

The Labarum.

Three Em-

Monogram

of the

the Saviour.

blems Carried in the Mysteries. From Jennings's T/w Rosicrucians.


it

Saviour.

of jpz/oTOi,-

i.e.,

" good " or " benign," but, he adds,


In fact, the character

may

prefigure

the Cross of Christ."

may

be translated as a

contraction of various meanings;


'

other instances of pre-Christian use


pagans, either from ignorance, or else uncon-

Higgins, Celtic J)riiids,


Gretser,

p. 127.
ii,

'

De

Cruce,

lib.

cap. 38.

The

sciously giving evidence of their kindness, often called the Christians, Chreestians.

Tertullian,

Apol.,

c.

iii.

Monograms
might be given; those
extended, for we find
the
coins of the

of

Our Lord

189

in the illustration

from Jennings' might be sup-

posed to stand for Christ Soter.


it

The

use of the

monogram was widely

in

ancient Runic inscriptions in Zealand and on

Eastern
not infrein

caliphs.

"

It is

quently met with


cient

an-

Greek

inscriptions,

and

is

to be seen on

some

of the coins of

Herod the

Great."

'

For the
ieties

principal xar-

of

the

monogram

Varieties of the
.

we

must

..

,..

search the

Monogram.
Various Crosses of the Greek Form.

treasuries of early Christian


art,

the Catacombs,
first

From

Didron's Christiaji Iconography.

and the
dora

Italian churches.

The most

noted, that of Constantine's

Labantui, ajipears on the shields of the soldiers of Justinian and Theoin

the mosaics in the Church of S. Apollinare


in

Nuovo

at

Ravenna.

As

the early Cross, early


writers
it

Christian

recog-

nized

in

the mystical
to

CO

seal

alluded

by

the

Prophet and the Apostle


(Ezek.
2,

ix., 4,
,

6; Rev.

vii.,

xiv.

i).

Tertullian and
of Alexandria,
it
;

S.

Clement

both allude to

Epiph-

N
Greek and Latin Crosses of Various Forms.

anius and Origen explain


it

as symbolical of Christ's

twofold nature.

From Didron's

Christian Iconography.

Amone

the earliest

in-

stances existing since the time of Christ, are those found


in the
\'illa

and baths of Chedworth, England.

The mono-

Earliest Instances.

gram and the word Arviri


'

indicate that the structure

was erected under

Jennings, The Hosicriicians, pp. 147, 180, 248. Northcote and Brownlow, Roma Sotterranca, p. 231.

go

History of the Cross

King Arviragus, who lived from the time of Claudius to that of DomiThe expedition of the former to Britain took place A.D. 43; the tian.
latter

began to reign A.D.


249, places

81.'

Even the persecutor


his
it

of the Christians,

Decius, A.D.

upon

coins

the legend

BA-^ATO."

As
,,
.

it

was one

of the earliest,

was

also

one of the most universal of and for familiar

Christian symbols, being engraved


universality
...

upon

their tombs, seals, lamps, chaluse, a sign, o '


'

ices, etc. ^

'

both those

for sacred

'^"^'=-

the true meaning of which was

unknown

to their perse-

cutors, yet speaking of love


it

as a literal

" illustration of the text,

and mercy to
I

tlie initiated.

They accepted
vii., 2),

saw another angel ascending

from the
the elect.

east,

having the sea/ of the living

God

" (Rev.

to

mark

One
is

of the earliest instances yet

found of

its

use, in the

Catacombs,

in

the following epitaph:

Tempore adriani imperatoris ma Rivs Adolescens dvx militvm qvi SATIS VIXIT DVM VITAM PRO CHO CVM SANGUINE CONSVNSIT IN PACE TANDEM QVIEVIT BENE MERENTES CVM LACRIMIS ET METU POSVERVNT.
" In Christ.
tary
ofificer,

"V

1.

D. VI.

In the time of the

Emperor Adrian, Marius


rested in peace.

young

mili-

who had

lived long

enough, when with his blood he gave up

his life for Christ. set this


last

At length he
in fear.

The

well-deserving

up with tears and

On

the 6th Ides of December."

The

words and the palm branch


1 1

attest his

martyrdom.

Hadrian reigned

from A.D.

5-138.
;^,

Tyrwhitt says' that " the monogram

or S.

Andrew's

cross

is

exchanged
Was the
Cross Derived from

into the upright -P in the majority of inscriptions, about the

end of the third century.


that " this
gy,.|^jjQ]

'
'

He supposes

from his researches

is

onogram.

the Origin of the Christian use of the Cross as a " niarks the transition from the letter"j-j^jg jp

monogram

of the Lord's

name

to the sj-mbol

which represented alike

His Person, His Life, and His Death, as the mind desired to contem'

Lysons,

Our

British Ancestors, p. 225.

In the Catacombs there


still

is

one inscription dated

in the third p. 19.

year of Vespasian, A.D. 71.

Some may be
Isis

older.

Northcote,

Roman

Catacombs,

The same word

is

found on the staves of

and

Osiris.

Higgins, p. 127.

'Tyrwhitt, Christian

Art and

Synibolisni, p. 124.

Monosrrams of Our Lord


plate

191
clue deference to

them."

This theory

may

be true, but with

all

so distin<,niished
authorities

an archa;ologist,
followed, that

we

think,

unless

deceived by the

we have

proof has been given showing that


the origin of the Cinisti.m use of

the Cross as a symbol was quite


as early as the use of the

mono-

gram,
ent of

if

not

earlier,

and independ-

it.

In the library of the \'aticanis

an exquisite fragment of the piety


of the early ages.
is

The monogram
the dove. s}-nibol

enclosed by a garland of flowers,


it

and upnn

sits

of the jieace -with (jod purchased

by the Redeemer's death.


about the fourth or
Paulinus,

Such

representations were common


fifth

century.

Hishop of Xola,

who

wrote inscriptions for the different


parts
of
his
basilica,

placed be-

neath the crowned cross the W'Ords, " Bear the cross, you who wish
to receive the crown."

Monogmm
Frum

in the Lapiilariaii Gallery,

Rome.

Maitland's Church in the Catacombs.

Elsewhere he says,

in

allusion to the

same:

The labor and reward of the saints justly go together The arduous cross and the crown its noble recomiiense."
In the Lapidarian Gallery
exquisite specimen.
in

Rome

there

is

an

The

jewels which adorned

the ancient crosses are represented in marble.

here given.

A reproduction of an early Christian intaglio A Tau cross forms part of the sacred
Didron thus explains
is

is

monogram.
of
Mystic Cross.

it:

" Christ,

the Son of God,


all
:

the

commencement and end


of intelliac-

the

A and
and

.Q,

the beginning and end of

From

Didron's

intellectual signs,

and by extension,
lastly, of

Christian Iconography.

gence

itself,

the
left.

company

the cross, on the right hand and on the

human soul, The Cross

has

192

History of the Cross

crushed Satan the old serpent, a serpent, therefore, unrolls and entwines

The soul, represented as a dove, himself around the foot of the cross." " although menaced by the serpent, looks steadfastly at the Cross, whence
she derives her strength, and by which she
is

rendered safe from the


tlie

poison of Satan.

The word Salus,


is

written below

ground on which

the cross and doves are standing,


faithful Christians in

the song of triumph poured forth by

honor
'

of Jesus

and the Cross."


vol.
i..

'

Didron, Christ. Icon.,

p. 395.

CHAPTER

IV

ROOD-SCREENS

ROOD-SCREENS are almost coeval with church


^

architecture.

The
..

propriety of the separation of the choir or chancel from the

nave, both for svmbolical and practical reasons, was evi-

dent to the builders of our

first

churches.

Perhaps they

, Antiquity of Rood-Screens.

which was from the Creator of


so,

derived their idea from recollections of the Temple, the original plan of all that is "fit and beautiful " and if
;

then these sacred places are the more worthy of reverence and imi-

tation.

Doubtless they wished to

tell

the people of the veil between

the Church Militant and the Church Triumphant, and remind them of the barrier impassable save through the
sacrifice of

Him whose

Passion

was represented above.'

Whatever may have been the cause


as Christianity

or reason for the erection of a


it

partition between the chancel and the nave,

was acted upon as soon

had

liberty to develop

accordingly

we

find that in the

time of Constantine, the choir of the Church of the Apostles, erected

by the emperor
\vork.

at Constantinople,

was enclosed by a screen

or trellis-

This was not an innovation or exception, for we

find the

same

historian recording a similar screen in a church in Tyre, built

and conse-

crated bj' Paulinus.'

The second Council

of Tours, A.U. 557, ordered

that laics should not enter the chancel, separated

by a screen from the

church, except to receive the sacrament of the Lord's Supper.


'

'

Eusebius, Life of Constantine, book iv., 59. In the symbolism of the Church the nave represents the Church Militant, the chancel the
;

Church Triumphant the screen the ment was formerly painted. ^ Eusebius, Eccles. Hist., book
ingenious sculpture."
13

division,

(/. e.

death), above which the

Doom

or Last Judg-

x.,

chap.
it

iv.

" .\nd

th.at

this (the

holy altar) might be in-

accessible to the multitude he enclosed

with a frame of lattice work, accurately wrought with

193

A Cathedral

Screen,

from

Pugin's Treatise on Chancel Screens

and Rood-Lofls.

194

Rood-Screens
This reverent practice of
buiiciers aiul
aiiliiiuily lias

195

received the sanction of pious

prelates until very late times.

Even

in

England, Arch-

bishop Parker (1559) demands, " Whether a partition be

made and

kept

between the chancel and the church according to the advertisements ? " Nearly a hundred years later, Bishop Montague (1641) asks, " Is your
chancel di\idetl troni the nave or body of your churcli with a jjartition
of stone, boards, wainscot, grates, or

otherwise

'

wherein

is

there

decent strong door to open and shut


key, to keep out boys,
girls,

occasion serveth) with lock and or irreverent men and women ? " Hooker
(as
-

defends the use. The Puritans objecting to these divisions ^ " as being framed according to the pattern of the church,
of

Hookers
, .

Defence,

the Jewish
if

Temple," Hooker observes that


it

it

is

"

fault

no

less

grievous,

so be

were

true,

than

if

some king should build


So

his

man-

sion-house by the model

of

Solomon's palace.

far forth
let

as our

churches and their temple have one end, what should

but that they

may
fore

lawfidly ha\e one form

The temple was


as ours

for sacrifice,

and there-

had rooms to that purpose, such

have none.

Our churches
and
order.

are places provided, that the people


in

might there assemble themselves,


their several degrees

due and decent manner, according to

Which thing being common unto


ber as theirs.

us with Jews,

we have

in this respect

our churches divided by certain partitions, although not so


. .
.

many

in

num-

There being

in

ours for local distinction between


strictness

the clergy and the rest (which yet

we do not with any great


as

or curiosity observe neither) but one partition, the cause whereof at the
first (as it

seemeth) was, that as

many

were capable of the holy mj'sin

teries,

might there assemble themselves and no other creep


'

amongst

them."

These screens were made


Flanders, and the North of

of metal, stone, or

wood.

In Germany,
material.

Europe metal was the usual


in Italy

In

England and France, stone and wood; and

and the
Material.

South, they were usually composed partly of marble and


parth- of metal.'

The Eastern Church employed a screen called


'

icoiiostasis,

from the

<,)uoie<l

ill

Handbook of English

Ecclesiology p. 73.

.See

also Perry's

Lawful Church
p. 76.

Ornaments, p. 525. Montague, " Visitation Articles," Camb. ed., p. 43, quoted in Hicrurgia Anglicana, ^ Hooker, Eccl. Polity, book v., 14. See notes on same section.
*

Pugin, Treatise on Chancel Screens, etc., p. 11.

Parochial Screen.

From

Pugin's 7'reatise on Chancel Screens

and Rood-Lofts.

196

Rood-Screens
icons dc[)ictcd upmi
it.

197
the same place as the
in

This docs not

occiij)}'

rood-screen

in

the Western Chinch, but

corresponds

place to our
Iconostases.

altar rails, separating the choir


It

from the sanctuary, or bema.

was made either of metal, marble, or wood.

The one
Th.it
S.

already referred to as built by Constantine was of copper-gilt.


of S. Catharine at Mt. Sinai
is

of ivory, tortoise-shell,

and

silver.'

Sophia's

is

of siher.

The lower stage was wrought

in

arabes(|ues or
ol

flowers; the second was composed of twelve columns (on each

the

holy doors), entwined two and two, supporting a rich crest-woik of

chased metal, and


lions,

filled in

between with panels bearing,


and Theodora.

in oval

med.il-

icons of our blessed

Lord and His mother, the prophets and


of Justinian

apostles,

and the monogram

The
work.
earliest

ancient iconostases, like the

early rood-screens, were of


it is

open

When

they were

made

solid,

difficult

now

to ascertain.

The

example which Neale mentions

is

that in the Arian


Tepekerman.

crypt of the Church of Tepekerman, in the Crimea, about


A.U. 350, which appears to be nearly open."

In the Western Church, the thirteenth century

is

the earliest date to

which the use

of solid screens

can be assigned.
ject appears to

Their ob-

have been the


the
ecclesias-

protection of
tics

from the cold after the

multiplication of the offices

consequent on the great

fre-

quency
offices,

of Obits,

i.

('.

funeral

the institution of the

office of the blessed

Virgin at
Tepekerman.

the Council of Clermont, and


other innovations.'
From
In the earl\- Church, the
Iconostasis at

Neale's History of the Holy Eastern Church.

Epistle and Gospel were read or sung from

two stone

pulpits,

termed
lessons

amboncs, or analogia, placed at the lower end of the chancel.


'

The

Neale, Hist. Eastern Church. Introduction, p. 193


(N. S.), p.
q.

also fully described in the Ecclesi-

ologisl, vol. xi.

''

Neale, Hist. Eastern Church, Introduction, pp. 193, 194. Father Thiers. Diss, de la Cloture des Chceurs des Eglises, quoted in the Ecclesiologist,
p. 92.

vol.

ii.,

'3)

3 S o

Rood-Screens
were also read from tlicm,
a blessing,
aiul as the reader, before coininencin<j,

199
asked

beginning with Jubc Doiitinc bcncdiccrc, they were com-^

monlv
screen.

called

Jiilu's,

which name

'

they retained when the


-^

^ , Rood-loft
,

pulpits were placed in the rood-loft, or gallery above the

orjube.

In the Eastern Church, the rood-loft, or, speaking


atialogiitm,
is

more properly, the


it

very ancient, ha\'ing been used long before


In England, rood-lofts do not
1

was

intro-

duced into the Western.


appear to
tur\-,'

11
lia\'e

been

common

before the fourteenth cenSt.

Early Uses.
1

although one was erected at


in

Albans

in

the twelfth century, the cathedrals and

and another
for the

the thirteenth at Bury St.

Edmunds;

monastery churches gradually adopting

this feature in their architecture,

purpose of giving warmth and seclusion to the canons or monks.

In the course of time the rood-loft

became the usual

place for important

public ceremonies, the reading of the pastorals of the Bishops, the pro-

clamation of treaties, and the acts of Councils.

P'rom

it,

penitents were

absolved, elect abbots presented to the people, and the Episcopal benediction was pronounced,

and

at a later date the

organ and singers were

placed in these

lofts.

Bishops often preached from them.


size, as in

In general, rood-screens were accordingly of ample


of S. Sophia, Constantinople.

that
in

Emperors were sometimes crowned

these places, which ceremony required considerable space


Size.

for its

due performance.

Several of the kings of France


at their coronation;

ascended the rood-loft of Rheims Cathedral


it

and as

was demolished previous to the accession

of Charles X., a

temporary

loft

was erected

for the occasion.


in

Pre-eminently
cross or rood.

the centre, over the holy doors, stood the great

This was usually framed of timber richly carved, gilded, or


, Furniture of the Rood-ioft.

painted. i
ists,

In the extremities were placed the four E\-angel-

and usually under the form of the well-known symbols;


rarely, as sitting figures in the act of writing.

it?
On

..

more

the reverse were

frequently the four doctors,

SS.

Jerome, Ambrose, Augustine, and


its

Gregory.

The

extremities of the Cross were generally floriated, and

sides crocketed or floriated.

The Amhoncs in the Eastern Church, it will be recollected, were placed between the choir and the sanctuary, as in San Clemente at Rome, not as was the rood-loft in the Western, between the choir and the nave. ' Glossary of Arc hitecturi\ " Rood-beam, Rood-loft."
'

Screen and Rood-Loft, Hospital, Lubeck.

From

Pugin's Treatise on Chancel Screens

and Rood-Lofts.

Rood-Screens
Occasionally, altars were erected
Cross, as
in

201

the loft under the foot of the

was the case


in

in

the Church of S. Maurice, at Vienna, where the


'

parochial altar was ^

the centre of the rood-loft, and the


snl/

elements of the Eucharist were also there reserved,


fi/n/o criicis.
'

,,. j Altar ^ Roodscreens.

The
added.

blessed Virgin and S.

John were placed

at the foot of the Cross,

but probably not at a very early period, and cherubim were occasionally

The rood

itself

sometimes rose to a great height,


Figures

examples being found extending sixty


hence,
,

owmg
.

to the great weight,

...
in

feet

from the
.

floor;

intheRoodScreen.

it

was sometimes sup-

ported by chains, often composed of long ornamented links, united by


gilded balls.
still

In

many

churches

the

Low

Countries, staples for these

remain.

In the lofts were also placed the lecterns for the Epistle

and Gospel.
them, and
in

The

lessons

and great antiphones were also chanted from

the Greek Church, the deacon read the diptychs from

them, and also formally warned the catechumens and penitents to depart
before the celebration of the holy Eucharist.

The

lecterns were either


in

mowible brass or metal stands, or stone desks


part of the masonry.

built

and forming

Coronas

of silver or other

metal were suspended from the rood-loft,


festivals,

and

filled

with lights on the great

and also decoCoronas.

rated with branches of trees and flowers.

Generally
of the screen,

in
is

wooden

screens the brest-summer, or main front


in

beam

the foundation

which the rood


is

is

fi.xed,

but there are


Rood-beam,

exceptions, in which the rood-beam

placed at

some

dis-

tance above the screen."


writer
is

At Antwerp Cathedral,
is

unless the
Rood Suspended.

mistaken,

a rood

suspended from the roof

instead of a screen.

In

Romanesque and

early pointed

work the chancel arches were so


sort of screen.

narrow that the walls on each side served as a


therefore,

The
Screen in

arch,
of

and
in

it

was furnished onlv with ^ trates and a rood-beam: has been questioned if the rood were not sometimes,
in a

Changes

Differ-

ent Periods.

these cases, fixed

kind of square niche over the chanat a later period

cel arch,

where the

Doom

was usually painted.

As

the

chancel arch increased in width, so the rood-screen


splendor, until
'

increased in size

and

it

reached

its

height of magnificence in the Tudor age.


etc., p. 17.

Pugin. Treatise on Chance! Screens,


Ibid., pp. ig, 20.

202

History of the Cross


ascent to the
loft

The

was by means of the rood-staircase.

Of these

there were sometimes two, as in the case of S. Etienne-du-Mont at Paris.

Two
Rood-Staircase.

spiral staircases of exquisite


.

beauty wound around the

opposite piers of the screen.


cealed in a pier, or in the chancel wall, or,
tral

(Jccasionally they were con-

-^

11

when accompanied by

a cen-

tower, formed a part of the main staircase to the belfry.


in a rood-turret,

Often they

were also carried up

many

of the Norfolk churches hav-

ing two turrets," which furnished at the same time a convenient passage-

way to the leads. From the staircase, the entrance


door.

to the rood-loft

was by the roodaisle,

When

the staircase was in the north or south wall of the

as in
Rood-Door.

many

of the churches in Somersetshire, a

sage was thrown across to the chancel arch.


in

wooden pasAt O Ti S. Peter s,


A

Ropsley, Lincolnshire, the staircase

is

in

the north wall of the north

aisle,

and a stone bridge


of the aisle.'

is

carried across, partly blocking the east win-

dow

After the time of Edward VI., rood-lofts

in

England were mostly

destroyed, and against them were directed the special fulminations of

the Puritans, although their senseless rage should have been allayed by

those lines which were often inscribed underneath the rood:


" Effigicni C/iristi diiin tra/isis, semper Jtonora, Noii tdiiieii cffigieiii, scd Quciii destgiiat, adora.
Jsr^m )ci,s
est,

Inscription on

the Rood-screen.

Quod iiuago

docct,

sed iwn

Dens

ipse,
'

Hunc
"

videos, et mente colas,

quod cernis

in il/n."

The

effigy of Christ,

when thou

passest under, ever honor, but yet not


;

the effigy, but

whom

it

represents, adore

for

what the image teaches


it,

is

God, but

itself is

not God.

Look then upon

and

in

thy mind wor-

ship what thou seest in it."

Post-Reformation rood-screens are not uncommon.

The Handbook
it is

of English Ecclcsiology instances


tion

several,

and remarks that

very curi'

Post-ReformaRoodScreens.

ous that of
destitute of

all

Sir Christopher '^

Wren's churches, only one


St. Paul's

is

some approximation

to a rood-screen, so strong

even then was ancient tradition.


tained
'

Cathedral
of

re-

its

rood-screen until 1547.

Stow declared: " the 17th

Novem-

' '
*

Galignani, Paris, p. 46. Durandiis, p. 217.

Handbook 0/

Eiii^lish Ecclesiology, " Rood-Screens." Weaver, Ancient Funerat Monuments in Great Britain,

p. 117.

Rood-Screens
her was begun to be pulled

203
Paul's church, with

down

the

Roode

in

Mary

and John and


in all the

all

other images in the church; and then the like was done
in

churches

England, and texts of Scripture were written upon


'

the walls of those churches against images."


in the

Many remained

even

time of

l'",lizabcth.

The translators
cel arch

of

Durandus thus explain the symbolism


:

of the chan-

and rood-screen
literally

" these, as separating the Choir from the Nave,


;

denote

the separation of the Clergy from the Lait\'

but sym-

bolically the division

between the Militant


of the I'aithful.

anil

Triumphant Churches,

that

is

to say, the
is

Death

sets this forth

the Triumphal Cross, the

The first great symbol which Image of Him who by His


and Martyrs appear
in

Death hath overcome Death, and hath gone before His people through
the valley of
its

shadow.

The images

of Saints

the lower ])anelling. as examples of faith and patience to us.


of the rood-screen itself represent their Passion

The

colours

and Victory: the crimcurious tracery of netset forth,

son sets forth the one, the gold the other.

The

work
while

typifies the obscure

manner

in

which heavenly things are


Militant.

we look

at

them from the Church

"And

for as

much

as the Blessed Martyrs passed

from

this

world to

the next through sore torments, the mouldings of the Chancel Arch represent the various kinds of sufferings through which they went.

Faith

was

their support,

and must be ours: and Faith

is

set forth either in the

abstract,

by the limpet moulding on the Chancel Arch; or on the screen, by the Creed
in raised gilt letters, or
it

as in Bishop's Hull, .Somersetshire,


is

represented by

some notable

action of which

was the source: so

in

Cleeve, Somersetshire, the destruction of a

Dragon runs along, not only


But
in that
left this

the Rood-screen, but the North Parclose also.


of evil spirits

the power world, but


side of

may

be exercised against us

till

we have

not

after, horrible

forms are sometimes sculptured

in

the

West

the Chancel Arch.

The foregoing remarks may perhaps some Ecclesiologists as a difficulty how


:

explain what has been


it

felt

by

happens, since the Chancel


that
it

is

more highly ornamented than the Nave,


side, not the

is

the Western, or

Nave

Eastern or Chancel side, of the Chancel Arch which

invariably receives the greatest share of ornament.

The

straitness of

the entrance to the

Kingdom
'

of

Heaven

is

set forth

by the excessive

nar-

Stow. Annals or Chronicles.

204

History of the Cross

rowness of Norman Chancel Arches.

And

the

final

separation of the

Church Triumphant from everything that


represented by the Great
of
ity
in

defileth

was almost invariably

Doom

painted in fresco over the Rood-screen

which there are

still

several examples, as the celebrated one in Trin-

Church, Coventry; and


that place were scraped

many more might be found


off.

if

the whitewash

And

not only

is

the judgment of the

world, but that of individuals here set forth: on the South side of the

Chancel wall of Preston Church, Sussex,

is

a fresco of S.

Michael weigh-

ing the souls; the Devil stands by, eager to secure his prize, but by the
intervention of the Blessed Virgin, the scale preponderates in favour of

the sinner."

'

Another mystical meaning


rood-screen
is
:

is

attributed bj' ecclesiologists to the

the doors always open inwards.

And
;

the great rood above

"

The

Tree of Life in the midst of the garden "

and therefore stands

in

the midst of the church.


'

Introduction to Diirandus, p. 102.

CHAPTER V
ALTAR AND RELIOUARV CROSSES

EUSEBIUS,
was
set up, r^'

passage which has been " that the symbol of the Saving Passion already ciuotcd, says
ill

his life of Constantine, in a

formed

of precious stones." I

'

And

from

this

it

_.

... The Altar

has been supposed that the Cross was placed upon the altar,
as the
if

cross,
it is

most

fitting place, in the

time of that Emperor.


in

But

strange,

that be the fact,

that the historian,


specific
it

his

minute description of
of the Cross as

churches, does not

make more

mention

one of

the ornaments of the altar.

Perhaps

was so common that he did not was introduced

think

it

necessary.
is

Bingham
the year 340.

of the opinion that the altar cross


It is

after

reasonable to suppose that,

in

the same centurj' in

which occurred the victory of Constantine over Maxentius,


ascribed to the

when

First

Roman Emperor's

being cheered on to

tri-

Used,

umph by

the miraculous vision of the Cross, and the presumed discovery

of the sacred

wood by S. Helena, the custom may have originated of " the symbol of the Saving Passion " in the most sacred part placing
Sozomen,
in

of the temple.

the fifth century, speaks of material crosses lying

upon

the altar^; and at the Council of Ephesus, A.D. 431, Acacius of Mitylene,
incidentally alluded to the Cross being honored together
in the

vth

with altars of Christ,' indicating that


niture of the sanctuaiy at that time.

it

was part of the

fur-

Century,

In the second Council of Tours, A.D. 567,

it

was decreed that the


in

elements of the Eucharist should not be kept

the ariiinriuiii, but


also

under the figure of the Cross upon the


'

altar.'
^

The same Council

Life of Constantine,

lib. iii.,

cap. 40.

Fleury, Eccles. Hist., xxv,, 34.

'

Sozomen,

lib. i.,

cap. 3.

Bingham, Antiq.,

b. viii., sec. 19.

205

Maximianus Welcoming

Justinian.

From
206

Ciampini's V<lt-ra Moiiimenta.

Altar ami Reliquary Crosses

207

forbade the celebration of the Lord's Supper without the presence of a


cross

upon the

hoI\- table.

Evagrius records that Chosroes gave silver


uiji_)n
^
^

crosses to a church in Constantinoi)le to be fixed


altar.'

the the

, In .. the ,,, ^ Vlth

In a fresco of the same century (the sixth),


of S. \'ilale at

in

Century.

Church
the

Ravenna, representing Ma.ximianus welcoming

Emperor
hands."

Justinian, the Bishop holds

what seems to be an

altar cross

in his

In those days gifts

were not

uncommon
still
'

of gold crosses richly

adorned

with costly gems, containing the


true Cross.

greater wealth of a fragment of the

Pope Symmachus
in

(A.U.
it

498-515) presented
A

cross Given to

such an one to the Vatican, and


but that these were placed
sanctuary.

can hardlv be supposed ^

thevat.can by Pope

the most hallowed part of the


till

Symmachus.
re-

Nevertheless, altars,

a late period,

judging from the

presentations which have been handed tlown to us, were severely simple
in their furniture.

Leo IV.,

'

A.D. ^^' 347,

ordered that the

Altars Unadorned
. ,

...

,,

only ornaments should be the ca/'sa or reliquary, the Gospels

in

Eariy Ages,

and the pyx.

In a fresco of the ninth

centur_\-, in

the Church of S.

Ambrogio

at Milan, S.

Ambrose

is

represented as celebrating mass at a


is

small cylindrical altar, the only ornament upon which

a plain cross.

In a painting of the Italian school of the eleventh century, given

by

D'Agincourt, the altar at celebration supports only two tapers and a


small cross.

And

that

for

one or two centuries these were used or


in

omitted, indifferently, seems probable; for


find altars

the thirteenth century


in

we

without cross, tapers, or adornments, as

the shrine by

Giovanni da Pisa, Arezzo Cathedral, A.D. 1286; or with the Cross alone,
as in a painting

by Cimabue
still

in

the Uffizi, Florence.

In the fourteenth

century the altar

appears unadorned

even
of

in so

high a solemnity
in

as a coronation, as represented
'

on the tomb
ii.,

Guido Tarlati

Arezzo

Evag., Ecch-s. Hist., lib. vi., cap. 21.

' '

Ciampini, Vetera Moninienta, tom.

tab. 22.
is

To

those utilitarians

who

object that

money

wasted

the adornment, which might be

given to other laudable objects, this Bishop of


sixteen years,
at least four

Rome

should be ciled.

During
altars,

a pontilicate of

when Rome was depressed owing to the Gothic and Vandal churches, and enlarging many others, presenting six silver

wars, besides building

and images of
to

silver of the Saviour

and his apostles (altogether weighing one hundred and twenty pounds),

the Ostian Basilica, he erected baths for the

monks (and probably


and near

Pilgrims), established hospices

for the poor near the basilicas within the city,

S. Peter's, S. Paul's,

and

S.

Laurence's

without the walls, and expended large sums in the redemption of citizens sold into slavery, and
in the

maintenance of the African bishops driven into

exile in Sardinia

jectors to such liberality

may

find comfort in thinking that

no bishop

in the present

by the Vandals. Obday has the

means,

let

alone the will, to emulate that Bishop of Rimie.

208

History of the Cross


illus-

Cathedral, A.D. 1320-1330; or with only the Cross, as in Giotto's


trations of the
life

of S.

Francis, and in the frescos

by Fra Angelico
Laurence
in

depicting the celebration of

mass

in the

Chapel

of S.

the

Reliqunry of Orvieto.

XlVth Century.
the

From

Labarte's

Handbook of the Arts of

Middle Ages and Renaissaiue.

Vatican.

Even

in

the paintings of Raphael and of Andrea del Sarto the


is

decoration of the altar


ited in
It

simple compared with the profusion

now exhib-

modern

Italian churches."
in spite of

would seem, therefore, that


^

the canon of the Council of


pp. 55S, 562.

Hemans, Aueient Chyistianity and Saered Art,

Altar and Reliquary Crosses


Tours
as to the usage of the Cross, that
it

209

was not generally placed upon


strict

the altar until the ninth century, and even then, that there was no

custom for several hundred years. It has been stated that " before the fourteenth century no candles or crosses were
permitted to be permanently set on the
invariably brought in by two acolytes
altars,

Cross Placed Altar m IXth Century.

Upon

but were
to be said."
'

when mass was

Prior

to the sixteenth century altars exhibited little else than the " emblem of the Saving Passion," and that as a simple cross

crucifix

when

Ordered,

much more

frequent!}- than as a crucifix.

The

latter

was not an

indis-

pensable accessory until ordered by Benedict XIV., A.D. 1754.

Many

altar crosses

were used as reliquaries, and contained a fragment


Beryls and
Adornment
of

of the true Cross, and were ornamented with precious stones.


pearls especially were chosen
;

the color of the


Charit\;

first,

green, sym-

bolizing Regeneration,

Hope, and

the [)urc white

the Cross,

of the other reminding the worshipper of Light, Innocence, and Purity.

Few
able
is

ancient altar crosses are in existence.


the Baptistery at Ravenna;
it

One

of the

most venerform, and


Ancient cross at Ravenna.

is in

is

nearly of the

patti'e

ilated A.D. 6S8.

comparatively modern one, yet interdonor,


is

esting on account nf
It

its

preserved

in

York

^linster.

stands on six bases, having angels on their pinnacles; two of the celes-

tials

hold

in their

hands the rehcs of the chasuble of

S. Peter;

images of

the thieves and others connected with the Crucifixion are at the foot,

and

it

is

adorned with rubies, sapphires, and other gems.


III.
is

It

was the

gift of

King Richard the


It is of

Multitudes of examples might be given, but one


twelfth century.
nailed,

selected of the

copper and
is

gilt.

The

feet are not crossed or


crossofxiith
Century,

but the third

nail

shown

in

the suppedanciim.

" At the foot

of the Cross are three archangels,

who
in

with
of

outstretched wings encircle the tree of redemption.

Each

them holds

a medallion, upon which

is

inscribed his
ofifice

name

Hebrew, with the

Latin translation, recalling his

with the Most High:

" Michael

qiiis lit

Dc lis.

Gabriel fortitudo Dei.

Raphael

mediciiia Dei.

The sun and moon


the tunic
is

are represented

by the conventional

figures.

Upon

an inscription on a sliding door. Lignum Domini, showing


'

Walcott, Sacred Archteology, "Altar."

2IO

History of the Cross


"

that within was a portion of the true Cross.

The messengers

of the

Eternal, seated at the foot of

tlie

Cross, are placed there to attest that

the Crucified has not ceased to be the Lord of the universe, whose im-

mutable decrees they are ready to execute."


All

'

Protestants have not rejected

the use of the altar Cross, or crucifix.


Use of Altar
Cross in Europe,
still
'^'^'-'

United Lutheran and


in

reformed sects

Prussia

retain the crucifix

upon

their

Com-

munion tables." At the coronation of the " White King." Charles L, there
was a
crucifix

upon the
in

altar.

Even

when England was sunk

Erastianism,

Bishop Butler placed a white marble


cross on the altar of the Cathedral of
Bristol,

where

it

remained
in
1

until

de-

stroyed

by the mob
in this

83

1.'

Nor

should we forget

place the Cross

used upon the

altar,

which Queen Eliza-

beth refused to have removed.

The

Nestorians,
\\ill

while venerating

the Cross,
p,^ L.r05S
. Among

not tolerate the crucifix.


mis-

When Roman Catholic

the Nestorians.

gionarics have left the cruci-

Bronze Crucifix.

From

Labarte's

the

Xllth Century. fix Handbook of the Arts of -^^^ Middle Ages and Renmssance.

among them, they have broken


f^.^,^^ ^j^^ (^^.^^^^

the

^j^^^ Consider
distinctly

the
declaring that
its

Cross as sacramental,'

efficacy

is

derived from

Him

\\\\o

was

crucified.

Hence

on Holy Cross day (September 13th) in their services they appeal to the " Cross " that " has saved us," "the Cross has made us triumphant,"
" the Cross has renewed us," " the Cross has
'

made

us at peace," " the

Handbook of Arts of the Middle Ages, p. xviii., fig 14. to the Bishop of London, p. 115. ' Fitzgerald, Life of Bishop Butler, prefixed to his Analogy, p. Iviii. *" The earliest Christian artists when making a representation of the Trinity, placed a Cross beside the Father and the Holy Spirit a Cross only, without our crucified Lord. The In Christian Iconography, Cross did not only recall Christ to mind, but actually showed Him.
Laliarte,
^

Pusey, Letter

Christ

is

actually present under the form and semlilance of


i.,

the Cross."

Didron's Christ.

Icon., vol.

p. 367.

Altar and Rcli(|uary Crosses


living;

211
that was lost."

Cross went out to seek after

us,

and saved our

life

They
just

trace the orit^in of the worsliip to the tradition that


pre\inLis to
llis
liis

ascension, led his disciples to


in

when Christ, Mount r)livet, He


brinjj;

stretched out

hands

the fnim of a cross,

in

order to

to tlleir

recollection, that from the

shame
S.

of the cross, on which they


in

had seen

him.

He had

derived that i4lory

which they beheld his ascension,

according to the words of

Paul: " lie

humbled himself and


So when the

fjecanic

obedient unto death, e\'en the de.ith of the Cross, wherefore hath
their
hiL;hl\-

God

also

exalted

him"

Phil.

ii..

(S-9).

disciples

saw

Lord exhibiting the


in the " u])per

figure of the Cross, they prostrated themselves

to the ground.

Hence the Nestorians say

that the worship of the Cross


in

began
och
;

chamber." and afterwards was recognized

Anti-

and yet guarding against idolatry, the\- afhrni, "

we

offer fervent

and Eucharistic worship, not


to

to the fashioned matter of the Cross, but


'

Him whom we
^

figLire

on

it."

Badi^er, .W-storunis,

and

their Rituals^ vol.

ii.,

pp. 130136.

CHAPTER

VI

CRUCIFORM ORXAMEXTS

A
few
bol,

PROPER
may

description of ecclesiastical and secular articles and


is

furniture in which the Cross

used would

fill

volumes, but

much

information
articles

be easily found

in

other works; hence a reference to a


in

not at the present time in general use

the Anglican and

American branches of the Church, by way of


needed.

illustration, is all that is

Every appurtenance of the altar was adorned with this sacred symProminent wrought, engraved, or surmounting it in due place.

among
Ciborium.

these
,

is
,.

the

ciboriiiiii.
,
.

Sometimes
,

it

is
,

merely
,

a covered chalice or p\'x, but

it

appears formerly to have


pillars,

been a small dome-shaped temple, or rather canopw resting upon

surmounted by a
gold or
silver,

cross, while within

it

was suspended a dove, or cup of


It is

containing the reserved Host.


S.

of ancient use, being

mentioned by

Chrysostom.
is

The monstrance

of

medieval times.

Although
in

in

the eleventh

century the Eucharist was sometimes


Council of Cologne,
The Monstrance.

carried

processions, yet the

in 1452, first

mentions that the Host

was carried
ously, the wafer

visibly

m
in

a monstrance,

showing

that, previ-

had been borne

a closed ciborium.
it

There are various


tower with

forms of the monstrance.

Sometimes

is

a little jewelled

glazed apertures, a figure of a saint, or the hol\' lamb, or a cross.


crystal tube

mounted on

a pedestal of gold or silver, covered with a can-

opy belongs
large disc,
is

to the fifteenth century,


.

and a sun with


above
work.

rays, to the seven-

teenth century.

At Conques there

is

preserved one of silver-gilt with a


it;

and a double

or patriarchal cross

the lower portion


articles sanc-

of the fourteenth centur}-. the rest of later

Other

tified

by

the Cross are too familiar to need mention.

r^c^/.

#^!V'^-

^f^'^^^^

Ciborium.

Byzantine, end of
in

From Wheatley's Art Work

XlVth Century. Cold and Silver.

214

History of the Cross


now known to require description. Yet among the variations of the Cross
The
sacerdotal vestments are

too well

is

one worthy of notice.

It

was ex-

hibited at the Archasological Institute,

London,

in

86 1.

crimson velvet

chasuble of the sixteenth century bore


an embroidered crucifix,
r,o== p,,. Cross Kepre-

in

which Christ
as
sus-

^^as

represented i

sentedasaTree.

pgndcd, UOt from a CrOSS,

but from a veritable tree, leafless and

lopped of

its

branches.
last

Probably the
vation
stations.
is

instance of inno-

that of
in

Pope Benedict XIII.,


1730,

who
be

ordered a

cross

to

placed over
in

every picture denoting a station

the

Roman
As

Catholic churches.

has

been already mentioned,

Theodosius, about the end of the fourth


century, introduced the royal symbol,

the
Mound and
Orb.

mound
Cross.'

or orb, represur-

senting the world

mounted by the
Senate
still

The Roman

hankered after their pagan

emblems, and requested permission to


erect an altar to the goddess of Victory,

which had been removed.


it,

The

Emperor forbade

and about the same

time abolished the worship of Serapis

and other heathen

divinities of
in

Egypt,

decreeing that no one

the

Roman

J^'HTjii^ dominions should presume


an idol by
Monstrance of Sedletz Castle, Bohemia, vvr.i, Century. Prom wi n s Wlieatley XV th r- ,
T. .

to worship

sacrifice.
^
1

It
1

was on that
day.

4.1 u ,uu occasion that he crowned the orb witli

^,

Art Work

in Go/d

and

Silver.

the Cross, as

it

is

used

in

this

'

See pp.

S,

156,

and Walsh, Ancient Coins,

p. 121.

Crucilurm Ornaments
The
intcr[)rt.-tation of its
:

symbolism

is

given

in

the Coi-onation Ser\ice of

Great Britain

Receive

tliis

imperial robe, and oib, and the I.ord v'our

God

eiulue

you

witli

knowledge and wisdom, with


Prayer Used at
Delivery of Cress and Orb,

majesty and with iiower

from on high, the Lord


clothe you with the robe
of righteousness, of salvation.

and with the garments


see this

And when }ou


is

orb set under the Cross remember that


the whole world subject to the power

and empire of Christ our Redeemer:


for

He

is

the Prince of Kings of the


of

earth,

King

Kings,

and Lord of

Lords.

So that no man can reign

happily

who

tlerives

not his authority


all

from Him, and directs


according to His laws."

his actions

The
because

ancient

sceptre

among

the

Greeks was a wand

called

Aa-pHi/s,
Sceplre,

made
as

of a plant

of that name,

known
Fc-?y}/iz ;

b}'

the

Romans
in
is

hence the em-

perors were called Xartliccoplioroi.

The
in

only place

which
in

this

herb grows

abundance
in the

the island

named Oxia,

Sea of Marmora, where the Greek

emperors made their summer residence.

Judging from the coins described by


Gretser, Flavins Phocas, ele\-ated to the
Monstrance.
first

From

Lee's Glossary.

throne by the army

in

the year 602, was the


a bitter, cruel,

who adorned

the sceptre
Sceptre First

with the Cross.


of parading

He was
1

bad man, but fond


Surmounted by
^^^ Cross.

With what questionable motives 11 originated those symbols of supreme power, the crowned
his piety.
1

orb, the sceptre

and cross-bearing crown, which have become the

ac-

credited badges of the great Christian sovereigns of Europe!

One

of the

most notable among ancient crowns

is

that of Charle-

2l6
magne.
This crown
It

History of the Cross


is still

preserved in the Imperial Treasis

ury at Vienna.
Crown
of

weighs fourteen pounds, and


'

composed

of eight plates of gold, o l^ t>

four large and four o

Charlemagne.

small, Connected
jewels,

by hinges.

ment contains twelve

The first compartThe second, on unpolished.

the right hand, a figure of our Saviour sitting between two


cherubs, each with four wings, and below, the motto Per
inc rcgcs regnant.

The

third, fifth,

and seventh compartIn the fourth


his side the
is

ments contain only gold and gems.


figure of
Isaiah,

the

King Hezckiah,
scroll,

sitting,

and by
is

prophet

with a

on which

written Eccc, adjiccam

super dies tuos

XV.

annos.

The
scroll

sixth has the effigy of


in

King
regis

David crowned; on the


judieiiiin diligit.

his

hand

is

Honor

The
is

eighth contains another figure, SoloDoiiiiuimn, Regeiu ainate.

mon on
;

the scroll

Tiiiiete
is

On

the top of the crown

a cross, with seventeen jewels in

the forepart, and on the top of the

Cross

/.

H.

S.

Rex

Judicornin.

In the arch or semicircle, which

was added by the Emperor Conrad,

are

the

following

words

Clwuoiiradus Dei gratia Roiiiaiiorniii Iinperator

Aug.

"

The

cos-

tume
of

of the figures resembles that

the

Emperors

of

the

Lower

Empire, and although the inscriptions are in Latin, the whole bears

the
ship.
is

impress of Greek workman-

The ground

of the figures

formed by the

metal

itself,

which has been hollowed out to


receive the enamel
;
:

Sceptre

Sur-

but the details counted by the Monstrance German Example Cross. From of the design are traced out with wheatley's ^rf of the XVIth Century. From Lee's Glossary of Liturgi- fine fillets of gold. The flesh tints nwk i Gold
cal

and Etclesiasiical

Tt^rms.

and are
in

Si/ivy.

rose-colored enamel;

the

colors
red,

employed

in

the draperies and accessories are deep and light blue,

and white.

This crown has unquestionably been retouched at vari-

Cruciform Ornaments
ous periods, but yet there
assigns the
is

217
which

nothint;- to iiu'alidatc the tradition

more ancient portions


of

to the time of Charlemagne.


'

The

enamels must belong to the same early period."

Every crown from the days

Charlemagne downward bears the

sacred s}-mbol, teaching the lesson of the apostle, " the powers that be,
are of

God."

Crown

of Cliarlem.igne.

From
is

Wliealliy's ./'/ ll'ork in Gohl

ami

Silver.

The
de-lis,

English crown royal

ornamented with crosses />af fir and

fleurs-

symbolizing the protecting power of the Cross and humility, or as


it,

some read
gin.

emblematic of our blessed Lord and the VirEnglish Crowns.

The

royal crown of S. Edward, of the

same fashion

as that of

Edward the Confessor, was kept in Westminster Abbey until the time of the Great Rebellion, when it was stolen and sold in 1642.
It

was formed of four crosses patoucc and four


circular bars

fleurs-de-lis

of

gold.

Four
tlie
'

meeting

at the top in the

form of a cross rose from


of gold studded with

crosses.

At the

intersection

was a mound
this

Labarte, Handbook of Fine Arts of the Miildle Ages, p. 113; Millington, Heraldry in

History, Poetry,
Englisli kings

and Romance, p. who held the office


1

255.

This aiuliof says that

of Archtreasurer to the

Roman Empire.

crown has been borne by several Lacroi-x, Arts of the

Middle Ages,

p.

27.

2l8

History of the Cross

precious stones, surmounted by a cross of gold and gems, with three


large oval pearls, one of

them

fixed at the top, the other

two pendent

from the arms

of the cross.
in

Queen Consort's crown


the Confessor."

The ancient fashion is preserved in the memory of Queen Editha, consort of Edward

The

coronet of the Prince of Wales resembles the crown royal, with

the omission of one of the arches.

That
one

of the Princess of

Royal

is

comand

posed of four

fleurs-de-lis,

two

crosses,

which

is

in the centre,

two strawbcrrv

leaves.

Crown
English Crown.

of Austria.

From
is

Berry's Hei-aljric Encyclopedia.

The crown
It
is
.

of Austria

one of the most beautiful of European diadems.


;

garnished with costly gems


rises
i^y
a^

from the cap, bordered with

fleurs-de-lis,

Crown

of Austria.

an arched

mound
art
is

enriched with pearls and surmounted ^ whereon is a cross, gemmed also with pearls.
fillet, '

Another ancient crown


relic of

is

that of Hungary.

" This most venerable


of fine gold,
It

Byzantine

formed of a broad,

flat circlet

from

Crown

f of

which spring four arches supporting a \r ir r^ t> &


^_p_ 10/2,

cross.

was sent

Hungary.

by Michacl Ducas, Emperor


or,

of Constantinople,

to the

Duke

of Hungan.-,
circlet,

as he

is

styled in his enamel portrait


of the Turks.

placed above the

Geabitras,

King

Next comes

portrait of Constantinus Porphyrogenitus; then one of

Ducas himself

the fourth and largest enamel represents Christ seated, exactly as he appears on the bezants of the period.

These four

portraits are placed at


;

the springing of the arches that close the top of the crown

on the front

of the circlet itself are fixed four smaller enamels of Michael, Gabriel, S.

George, and S. Demetrius.

Above the medallion


below
it is

of Christ

is

a large heart-shaped amethyst,

a huge, rough sapphire; four large sapphires are also set equi'

Millington, Heraldry in History, Poetry,

and Romance,

p. 254.

Crucilonn Ornaments
distant on the circlet,
all

219

but one of them


of the cir-

being unpolished.
clet arc closely

The edges

studded with pearls, set

touching each other in a row.


sapphire at the back
is

The
b)-

large

surrounded

four

green stones, cut

in

an oblong form, but

their precise nature cannot be ascertained.

In the deed by which

Queen Elizabeth

of

Hungary pledged
peror Frederick

this

crown to the Em-

I\'.,

the stones are enusapphires,


fifty

merated
rubies,

as

fifty-three

one emerald, and three hundred


pearls.

and twenty

Here

is

another proof

of the early existence of the emerald in

Europe, and the correctness of the opinion


as to the real nature of the h\'acinthus,

for

what other gem, to judge from Claudand armor


of

ian's account of the robes

Theodosius. should we expect to see so


la\-ishly

employed

as this in decorations
?

of the Byzantine age

"

'

" In clearing away a deserted cemetery


at

Fuente

di Guerrazzar,

two leagues from


Cross of King Reccesvinthus.

Toledo," was discox'ered the

crown

of

King ReccesvinIt is

thus, A.D. 653.

a circle of fine gold,

one foot

in

diameter, set with thirty huge

rubies and thirty-five pearls, alternating

with sapphires.

The

circle

is

edged by two

borders, adorned with a running pattern


of

Greek crosses made


cioissoiiiic's

of pieces of carnel-

ian

in

gold.

From

twenty-

four

little

chains hang these letters of gold,


Crown
of Reccesvinthus.

incrusted with carnelian. like the border:


-f

Vllth Century.

RECCESVIXTHUS REX OFFERET.


the letters again hang twenty'

From

Whe.itley's

Art Work
Silver.

in Gold

From

and
p. 309.

King, Antique Gems.

220

History of the Cross


forming a fringe
all

four pear-shaped pink rubies,

round the crown.

Lowest
"

of all

hangs a magnificent

cross, of elegant form, set with very


foot.

large gems,

and having three pendants from the arms and


is

The

second crown, supposed to be the Queen's,

set

with rubies,

sapphires, emeralds, opals, and large pearls, and has a fringe of rubies

and a pendant

cross,

but

is

altogether of a plainer

make than the


in

first."

'

" This cross,

itself

indubitably a work of the Carlovingian period, but

mounted upon a
Chapelle.

silver-gilt foot of
is

very elegant design

the taste of the

fifteenth century,

preserved

in

the treasury of the Cathedral of Ai.x-lais

The

surface of the gold

ornamented with arabesque


together in plain raised

tracery,
collets.

and studded thickly with gems,

set close

These

consist of pearls, rubies,

sapphires, amethysts (one an intaglio of


of the

the Three Graces), and emeralds.


cross
is

placed a

At the intersection magnificent cameo on onyx, about

arms of the
Augustus,

three inches high

and two and a

half wide, representing the laureated bust of

holding an eagle-topped sceptre,

work

of the highest merit.

But the most interesting feature


that presents itself to our notice
in

this early

relic

of the
is

first

dawn
in

of mediaeval art,

the

signet of Lotharius himself, set

the lower part of the stem

of the cross,

immediately be-

neath the cameo of Augustus.


It is

engraved on a large oval

piece of rock crystal, about one

and three quarter inches high

by one and
Brooch of Silver Filagree Work (Date Uncertain). From Wlieatley's .^/'Z JVoik in Gold and Sihcr.
fitting
i

a half wide,

and
,

represents the bust of the King,


,

his

head covered with a close

helmet

v%'ith

a slightly projecting frontlet, like those of the latest this legend, in well-formed

Roman period. man letters

Around the bust runs

Ro-

+
'

XPE ADIVVA HLOTHARIVM REG

" Cliriste adjm'a Hlotliariiiin Regent,"


King, Antique Gems,
p.

Christ, defend

King Lothaire.

308

Lacroix, Arts of the Middle Ages, p. 125.

Cruciform Ornaments
The execution
of the cngravini^
is

221

very tolerable, far better than

coukl have been expected at that date, A. U. 823, especially when


consider the rudeness of the coinage of the same period.
It is

we

not the

work

of the

Hyzantine school, for the characters of the legend bear no


its artists,

resemblance to those employed by

but are precisely the same

as those seen on the Frankish stone and metal

work

of tlie time of this

monarch.
I

This

is

by

far

the latest intaglio of ascertained date of which


its

have been able to find any trace; and

existence supports the opin-

ion previously expressed, that the art of engraving

gems

lingered in

Europe

to a

much

Liter periotl

th.m

is

generally supposed.
is

" This most splendid specimen of ancient jeweller's work


figured in the magnificent Mc'laiii^cs d' A)U-ku'ologic, vol.
et
i.,

admirably
Cahier

by

MM.

Martin."

'

There was one

article that
its

none but a gentleman dare wear, and


use.
it

hence, on account of

symbolism and
It
is

deserves a place

in this

chapter as well as the crown.

the sword, Cross-hilted, as became

a soldier of the Lord.

The whole equipment


" The and the

of a knight in days of chivalry

was symbolical.

spear, on account of its straightness, iron head, of the strength truth t>
'

was the emblem of truth,


1

ought to possess. a
of

^ Symbolism of a
,

The The

helmet,

of

shamefastness

the spurs,

diligence. Knighfs Armor.

gorget was the sign of obedience; for as the gorget went about the
it

neck, protecting

from wounds, so the virtue of obedience kept a


of his sovereign

knight within the

commands

and the order of chivalry.


the knight placed his

The
fell

shield

showed the

office of a

knight;

for, as

barrier

between the king and the people; and


shield,

as the stroke of a
it

sword

upon the

and saved the knight, so

behoved the knight to


'

present his body before his lord


of
all

when he was

in

danger."

Most sacred
remind

was the sword whose

hilt

was fashioned

like a cross, to

the wearer of his duty to

Him

^\ho died thereon.

Consecrated upon
cross-hiited

the

altar,

it

was prized

as the knight's dearest possession,

and to many a name was given, so that the trusty weapon was invested as
it

swords.

were with a personality.

Excalibar; Sir Bevis of

King Arthur named his Hampton, Morglay; Charlemagne Names of

called his Fusberta Joyosa.

The most

celebrated sword

'""'"""^ Swords.

of the Cid
'

Ruy

Diaz of Bivar wasTizona; he owned another scarcely


|i.

King, Antique Gems,

305.

"

Milliiigton, Ileyahlry,

|i.

71.

222
less celebrated,

History of the Cross


Colada.

Orlando rejoiced

in

the possession of Durin;

dana.

Launcelot of the Lake named his Aroundight


It

Siegfried's

was

called Balniung in the Nicbfliinffcn-Licd.

was made by the divine

Crucifix

Made from an

Cllil

Spaiu-.h

Ililt.

blacksmith, Wieland.
tich.

Mimung was

another weapon lent him by Witcalled Curtana, the cutter, a

Edward the Confessor's was


for the pointless
at their coronation.

name

now used
of

sword of mercy borne before the sovereigns

England

Cruciform Ornaments
The romance
of

223
recomniitnient to

Arthur

relates

the

inar\-ellou.s

supernatural hands of the famous ICxcalibar, or Caliburn, or Excalberd, at


the King's death.
Arthur's Sword.

His soul could not dejiart


.Sir

until that

was
it

accomplished, and Arthur sends


the
ri\-cr,

Lukyn

to

throw

in

but the knight covets it^


"

For

all

of colevne

was the blade

And all tin- hilte of precious stone And ever alackc then sayd the knighte.
: I

Must such

sword awave be throwne

"
!

Sword

Hilt,

XVIIth Century.

From

Labarte's Handbook of the Arts of the Middle Ages


it.

and

Renaissance.

So he hides
his duty,

but Sir

The King knows the deception, and again bids him do Lukyn again deceives, and throws in his own sword.
ri\er.

At

last,

stung by the thrice repeated reproaches of Arthur, he flings the

masic sword into the

224
"

History of the Cross

hande and an arme did nieete the sworde

And flourishd three times in the air, Then sunke benethe the renninge streme, And of the duke was seen noe mair."
'

Yet Richard Cceur de Lion claimed


weapon, and gave
"
it

to

have owned that noted

to

Tancred of
at that

Sicily.

And Richard

time gaf him a faire juelle,

The good sword

Caliburne, which Arthur luffed so well."

Upon
pledged

the

hilt

of the

sword the word " Jesus " was sometimes enif

graved, and an oath taken upon the sword was held as sacred as
at the altar.

The
David

poets are

full

of allusions to this.

Piers

Plowman

says that
"
in his daiss

dubbed

knights,

And

did him swere on her sword to ser\e truth for ever."


his troops to the pass of Roncesvalles

When

Bernardo del Carpio led


"

Around his banner flocked in scorn Of haughty Charlemagne And thus upon their swords were sworn The faithful sons of Spain."
to part com[3any with his co-witnesses

Nor would Hamlet be content

of the ghost of the buried " majesty of

Denmark

" until they complied

with his thrice-reiterated adjuration to swear


" Indeed,

upon

ni)'

sword, indeed."
until

And

the spiritual visitant leaves


"

them not
his

he

commands them

Swear by

sword."'

The solemn
soldier used the

use of the Cross-hilt

when on

the battlefield the dying

weapon
to.

of

war

as the symbol of the Prince of Peace, has

already been alluded

An
.

interesting

relic

was exhibited
1858.

at

meeting of the English

Archaeological Association in
.^ T Luther s , J ^Vedding Ring.

This was the wedding ring with

which Martin Luther married Catharine Bora, or de Boren.


j{
jj^

made

of foreign gold.

On

the inside

is

engraved the

following inscription: " D. Martine Luthero Catherini Boren, 13 Junii,


'

Percy, Reliques of A)ici,nt Poetry.

''

//umA/, act

i,

scene

5.

Cruciform Ornaments
1525," the day of his marriage.

225

The

ring forms an entire cross, on


is set,
I.

which

is

a figure of the Saviour, over whose licad a large ruby


I.

serving as a nimbus, and above, on a hihcl, arc the letters

N. R.

Emblems
])r.

of the Crucifixion are contiiuu'd round tlie ring.

It

belongs

to a gentleman of noble family at Wittenberg.'


jolin

ton,

Hall,

Donne bciiucathed to and Uuppa, seals made

his friends,

Watton, Herbert, Walwhich was cut a

of bloodstone, on

figure of our Saviour extended on an anchor instead of a cross.

With

one to Herbert he sent the following

iines, referring to

the change of his

old coat of arms from a sheaf of serpents to the cross:


" Adoiited in (lod's Family, and so

My
The

old coat
Cross,

lost, into

new arms

go.

my

Seal in Baptism, spred lielow,

Crosses grow .Anchors

Does, by that form, into an Anchor grow. bear, as thou slioiildst do


;

Thy

Anchor too. But he that makes our Crosses .Anchors thus.


Cross, and that Cross grows an
Is Christ,

who
tliis
I

there

is

crucified for us.


first

Yet with

may my

Serpents hold
pattern be
's

God
The

gives

new

blessings,

and yet leaves the old

p^.

Donne's Seal

Serpent, niay, as wise,

my

bVom Walton's
Complete Angler.

My

poison, as he feeds on dust, that

me.
sure
cure,

And as he rounds the earth to murder, He is my deatii hut on the Cross, my


;

Crucify nature then


All grace

and then

im]ilore

When
Under

all is
's

from him, crucified tliere before. Cross, and that Cross Anchor grown
a Catechism, not a Seal alone.
I

This Seal

that little Seal great gifts

send,

Both works, and prayers, pawns, and fruits of a friend. And may that Saint that rides on our great Seal, To you that bear his name, large bounty deal."

After George Herbert's death, this

seal,

given to him by Dr. Donne,

was found wrapped with the following verse:


"

When my

He

dear Friend could write no more, gave this Seal and so gave o'er.

When winds and w-aves rise highest, I am sure, This Anchor keeps my faith, that me secure."
'

Luther's arms were a cross upon a rose.


that he

He

jilaced a crucifix in

one of his books, thus

showing
IS

saw no error

in tlie use of the

symbol.

CHAPTER

VII

PROCESSIONAL CROSSES

AS

soon as the Church dared to emerge from the caves and holes of
the earth, wherein she had hid iierself during the
first

three hun-

dred years of the Christian


befitting ornaments.

era, the bride of Christ decided herself

with

Imposing

basilicas,

rich altars,

fragrant incense,

glowing

lights,

emblazoned

banners,

and jewelled crosses were her


glories of the Jewish

accustomed paraphernalia.
It

was not merely the dim recollection of the


this befitting

Temple which prompted lieve that the same spirit

ornamentation, but

we may

be-

that ordained the ritual of the elder


rites,

Church

moved

the hearts of the early Christians and inspired

ceremonies,
all

and garniture, which would bear symbolic teaching throughout


Early Use of
Processional Crosses.

time.

The
,

propriet\' of the Bishop, '

literallv

the overseer of

the flock of Christ, having the symbol of the Cross borne


before hmi, was at once acknowledged.
^
, .

Among
To

early instances

may

be cited that of

S.

Porphyry, Bishop of

Gaza, A.D. 396; but even in earlier times processional crosses were used.
one, pre-eminently the standard-bearer of the Cross in his century,

does the honor belong of exalting the Cross, like Constantine's Labaruta, as the standard of the
Used by s Chrysostom.

Church Militant.

When

S.

Chrysostom was

Called upou to battle with the Arians, he resolved to meet them on their own ground. To their magnificent proces-

sions with choristers, banners, incense, torches,


still

and

crosses,

he opposed
is

more gorgeous pomp and pageantry, and


ofifice

his ritual

now

acknow-

ledged as the
'

of

more than sixty

millions of Christians.'

The " Missionary Aspect of Ritualism," by R. F. Littledale, in the CIni>-ch and the World, 1870, p. 45. The Arians went in procession through the public places of the city on
solved to countermine them in their

Saturdays and Sundays, chanting hymns expository of their own heresy. S. Chrysostom reown way, " and that the business might be managed with

226

<
Si

228

History of the Cross


Others profited by the example of the great
missionary to the Saxons.
Cross Borne by Augustine.

When

S.

Augustine

landed
jjy ^^g^g

in

England, the opportunqJ imprcssiug the

s.

j^Q(. [Qg(-

'mind of the Kentish King.


sion,

solemn proces-

chanting the Litany, was preceded by a

silver cross, after

which was a painting


symbols as

of the
S.

Redeemer, glowing with gold and


Augustine, taking
tlie

color.

his text,

preached to Ethelbert of the truths they set


forth.

In like

manner proceeded the


Empire was,

Celtic

evangelizers of

Germany; and the conversion


at the least,
S.

of the great Russian

expedited by the gorgeous ceremonial of


Chrj'sostom, for

when Vladimir

sent messen-

gers to Constantinople, the Muscovite envoys,


Use in Germany and Constant!nople.

astonished at the vestments, the


siuging, the lights, the incense, and
.

processions, reported

<<
:

TT-i vV hen

we
is

stood in the temple [the Church of S. Sophia]

we

did not

know where we
like
it

were, for there


;

nothing else

upon earth

there in truth

God
who

has His dwelling with men, and

we can

never forget the beauty we saw there.

No

one

has once tasted sweets will afterwards take


is

that which

bitter; nor can


'

we now abide any


later,

longer in heathenism."

Still

in

the

twelfth century, S. Otto of

Bamberg overawed
in Stettin

an infuriated heathen

mob

with no
lit-

carnal weapon, but only the Cross and the

anies of his clergy.

The
altar,
Processional Cross.

Cross was taken from the side of the

and borne before the procession of clergy ^nd


laity to Certain
it

From
greater

Lee's Glossary.

Manner of Bearing the Cross.

fixed places,

where
made
i.

was lowered to receive


Empress' charge, and lighted
p. 476, ed. 166S.

pomp and ceremony

crosses of silver were

at the

torches were borne before them."


'

Cave, Lives of the Fathers,

Moor.ivief, Hist, of the Russian Church, chap.

Tn^rmn^

no-craf

fo\i4nD\c.]/.eToD\y

Tl0^tWl^.l^i
Ciampini's I'ctcya Monimenta.

Processional Cross.

From

229

230

History of the Cross


These places were
called stations.
faith-

the devout kisses of the populace.

Ciampini explains the term, as by their very names reminding the


ful of a military station, that
Origin of the
_^,
.

those baptized as soldiers of


^r-t-

Name

Chnst composed the Church Militant.


sional cross

^^,

tt ,i Hence the

proces-

Station.

was

at first called the cn/.v statioiialis.

Anxious
Clemente

to

honor the .symbol

of their faith, the Christians

decked

it

with their choicest jewels.


S. at

The

frescoes in the subterranean


crosses.

Church of

Rome

exhibit

gemmed

Charlemagne, following

the example of his predecessors, presented a cross covered with hyacinths to the Basilica of S. Peter's at Rome. The value incited its theft,
'

and

it

was replaced by Leo IV., who gave

a cross of the purest gold


II.

adorned with hyacinths. In after times Innocent silver, one hundred pounds in weight.

supplied a cross of

Crosses were carried in processions to meet bishops, emperors, kings,

and other distinguished persons; also in litanies from a very early period. In the course of time the Pope assumed the power of grantr ^ when Crosses Carried. were It had been borne before j,ig periTiission for their use.
Apostolic legates since the ninth century.
In the eleventh the privilege
as

was granted only to such


^

had received the pallium.


of

"'

Hence

S.

Anselm, Archbishop

Canterbury,

rebuked

Samuel, Bishop of Dublin, for presuming to have the Cross borne before

him

wiieii

not confirmed with the

pall."

In the twelfth century the right


all

was obtained from the Metropolitans, and by the thirteenth


bishops had the Cross carried before them.
ran, A.D. 1213,

the arch-

The

third Council of Late-

gave to the Patriarchs of Constantinople, Antioch, and


in

Jerusalem authority to carry the Cross everywhere except

the City of

Rome,

in

the presence of the

Roman

Pontiff, or an Apostolic legate

bearing the insignia of his


Cross not only in his

The Kings
to

of

The Archbishop of Ravenna bears his office. own province, but to within three miles of Rome. Hungary also carry the Cross, in memory of King Stephen,
in

whom

the right was granted,


of Nazareth

the year 1000, by Pope Sylvester

II.

The Archbishop

had the right

of using the Cross every-

where, and the Archbishop of Toledo, throughout Spain.


'

Of no ancient gem has


it

there been so

much

dispute as the hyacinth.

De Boot and De Lact con;

sider

the

common

amethyst.

M tiller says it was a pale,


strict attention

purple stone

Lessing, a reddish brown,

fiery, like the jacinth.


it is

Considering the

paid to symbolic colors by the early church,


etc., p.

probable that the color w;is blue or purple.


''

See King, Precious Stones, Gems,

193.
vo\.

S.

Anselm, Epist.,

lib. iii., ep. Ixvii.,

op. p. 393, quoted in

Rock, Ch. of Our Fathers,

ii.,

p. 225.

I'rocessional Cross.

From

Ciampini's I'c/cra Moiiiiiicnta.

231

232

History of the Cross


processional cross as an

The

cealed, like the pectoral cross, of another.'

emblem of authority was when a prelate passed through


, Archbishop
, , , .

to be con-

the diocese
matter.

Disputes frequently arose on


,

this

Why

Concealed. ,,,.,,.

U illiam ,,,.ickwane. W

,,

of \ ork,

complains to the

Pope, that while travelling

having

his Cross

in the province of Canterbury, A.D. 1280, borne before him according to ancient usage, " Adam

de Hales, an

officer of

my

lord of Canterbury,

rushed

like a

madman
'

upon

my

attendants and scandalously broke

my

cross in pieces."

Archbishop Winchelsey wrote to the Bishop

of Lincoln, A.L). 1300,

commanding him
cross borne before
laity

to prevent the

Archbishop of York from having his


through that diocese, the

him during

his progress

were not to kneel before him


^

for his blessing,

and

in all

the places
bells

which he passed through, divine service and the tolling of


immediately to cease."

were

About

half a century later, A.D.

1354, a

compromise was

effected

between the Archbishops of Canterbury and York.


Compromise
between the Archbishops Canterbury and York.
of

The

latter

was per-

mitted to have his cross borne before him throughout the ^ wholc proviucc of Canterbury, on condition of sending to
the shriiie of S. Thoiiias k Becket a golden image of the

value of forty pounds, representmg an archbishop bearmg a


i
i i

cross.

The image
by

to be sent within

two months

of his consecration,

either

his chancellor, or a doctor of laws, or a knight.


in

The Arch-

bishop of Canterbury was to enjoy the same privilege

the province of

York unconditionally.* At this time, or the year previous, it was arranged that when the two Archbishops were in the same procession,
their crosses should be borne side

by

side,

if

the road were sufficiently

wide; that of Canterbury being on the


left.

right,

and that of York on the

When

the

way was too narrow

for

both to pass on abreast, York

yielded the precedence."

Until towards the end of the twelfth century


his rank,

no

ecclesiastic,

however high

presumed

to

have a cross borne

before him in England except the two Archbishops.

About

that time

the papal legates, though not even bishops, had the Cross carried before

them, and wore mitres, by virtue of their


'

office.

Georgius,

'

Uf ritu Crucis, quoted in Pugin's Glossary. "Constitutions" of John Peckham, Archbishop of Canterbury, quoted
ii.,

in

Hart, Eccles.

Rticords, p. 103.
' '

Wilkins, Concilia, vol.

p, 265.

* Il'id.. p.

31.

Rock, Church of Our Fathers, vol. ii., p. 230. When Thomas a Becket returned from his seven years' of exile, he had his cross hoisted high on the ship that brought him from France.

Processional Crosses.

From

Ciampini's Vetera Moiiiniciita.

233

234

History of the Cross

Cardinal Wolsey had " two great crosses of silver whereof one was
for his archbishopric,

and the other

for his legatry."


Wolsey's
Crosses.

Such
be of

crosses were

presumed never to
less

costly

metal
richly

than

silver,

sometimes
gold

wrought

of

and

blazing with gems.

Sometimes

the simple Cross was used with-

*^^
~j3^

out an image, yet the double


Doubl
Crucifixes.

crucifix appears to

have been not unthis

common;

was to present

the image of our Lord both to the people and to the prelate.

When

the figure was attached

only to one side, that was turned

towards the Archbishop, as


the present custom
cifix is

is

when

a cru-

borne before the Pope.


thinks that although
strict

Rock
it

was not according to


ritual

usage,
are

Actual Use of
Patriarchal
Cross.

yet

there

strong
for

grounds

be-

lieving that the double-barred,

or patriarchal cross, was in a

few

instances

actually
of

used.

Anthony Beck, Bishop


ham, received from
Ancient Processional Cross, Circa 1400.

Durthe

Rome

honorary

title of

the Jerusalem

From

Paley's

ATanual of Gothic

Architecture.

patriarchate.
titled to

Hence he was engifts to


it

an appropriate cross; and


is

among

his

mortuary

his

cathedral

mentioned

a silver-gilt patriarchal cross, but


it

whether

was

mounted upon
or placed

a pedestal so that
staff is

might be used

as an altar cross,

upon a

not recorded.

In

Queen Mary's
is

Psalter,
in

a work of the thirteenth or fourteenth


the British

century, which

preserved

Museum,

a representation

is

Processional Crosses
given of an archbishop
hoKliiiL;

J0

a patriarchal cross.

Again, on some
Cardinal Borgia

monastic

seals, S.

Peter bears this symbol of power.'

possessed a Greek double-barred cross of iron, coated with copper, and


a reliquary also of this shape
Cross, near Avellene.
is

preserved

in

the Monastery of the


for

Holy
Arch-

In an did

MS.

at

Lambeth, executed

bishop Laud, the arms of the Archbishop of Canterbury are accompanied

by

a staff patriarchal."

As

a double-barred cross

was thought
cross

to indicate superior dignitj'

abo\e the

single, so a trii)le-barred

was attributed

to the Pope.
^ Triple-Barred
-

This seems to be merelv an


cross of this fashion
is

artistic invention.
in

No

actual

mentioned
still,

the Ordincs Roinani,

or P^pai Cross,

or

in

any

pontifical ritual;

as a

mark

of distinction, the representa-

tion has

been used, as

at S.

Denis
is

in the gates of

wood brought from


in

Guillon.

Gregory the Great

represented as holding

his

hand a
to

triple-barred cross, and the typical treatment ma\- be traced even

the Catacombs.^

According to the " Sarum use," the processional crosses used


churches
in

in
fig-

Lent were always

of

wood painted
mentioned

red,

and without the

ure of our Lord.

From

Easter until Ascension the crosses


Color of the

were of crystal or beryl.


tories of the
'

Such

are

in

the inven-

cross

m Lent and aster.

church plate of Lincoln Cathedral.

'
^

Rock, Church of Our Fathers, vol. ii., pp. 217-222. Oxford Glossary of Heraldry, art. " Crosier," note. Bosio, Roma Sottera ; Twining, Symbols, pi. viii., fig.

7.

CHAPTER
PUGIN,
. , ^ Confusion of terms Crosier and Pastoral
.

VIII

THE CROSIER AND PASTORAL STAFF


in
liis

G/ossary,

defines " Crosier"


. .

"

Cross, or staff,

borne by an archbisliop

this has often

been confounded
bishop, which r''

" by modern writers with the pastoral '


jg

staff of a

quite dissimilar, being

made

in the

form of a crook."

Staff.

The Oxford
is

Glossary of Heraldry says, that " the word


the

[crosier]

properly restricted to

crook of a bishop or abbot."


articles,

Common
distinct,

usage has applied one name to two


but authority can be cited for the

which

really are

error.

" Crosier"

may be
is

derived, not from the Latin crux, but the French crossc, which
plied to any thick club-ended article, ex. gr.,
erosse d' un inoiisquet, the butt

apla

uiie erosse, a ball bat,

end

of a

musket.

Strictly speaking, the

pastoral staff
Definition
of Crosier.

means
Staff,

a staff with a
it is

crook head,
derived.

like that of the

shepherd's

from whicli

The

crosier

is

a staff or rod,

with a cruciform termination at the top.

Prelates above
staff.

the rank of bishops had the right of using both crosier and pastoral

Bishops and abbots were entitled only to the


Cathedral are the tombs of six archbishops.
the
efifigies

latter.

In Canterbury

In the hands of three of

are placed the crossed stai?, in three the crook. k Becket he


is

On

the seal

of S.

Thomas

represented \\ith the pastoral

staff.'

The
in

Monumental Brass
Paris, bears

of Francis Halle.

Archbishop
crosier.

of

Narbonne, 1457.

both the crook and the


1848,

The

British Archaeological

Institute,

in

after investigation,

concluded, " that whilst archstaff as

bishops formerly exhibited the crossed

denoting their metro-

politan dignity, they also on ordinary' occasions used the crooked staff

which

t},-pified

their pastoral charge over their

own

dioceses, as in the

case of other bishops.

The carrying
'

of such a cross

was a mark that he

claimed jurisdiction there."


GcntU-inans Mag., November, 1848.

236

The
It

Crosier aiul Pastoral Staff name


Prop-

'61

has been supposed that the misapplication of the


staff

crosier to the pastoral

crept in use

from the bearers

[crovscrs) of the processional cross, or the bishop's staff.


erly,
it

belongs to the insignia of the degree abo\e the bishops,


S.

the archbishops.

Samson, Archbishop
contemporary.
positi\-e,

of

York,

in

the sixth

century,

is

said to have borne one, as did also S. Csesarius,


of Aries, a
is

Archbishop
period there

In the "

Anglo-Saxon

nothing

although we find that then a

procession was often headetl by a clerk carrying a golden, or


siK'er, crucifix, in like

manner

as did S.

Augustine when he met

King

Ethelbert, and the

Abbot
is

Ceolfrid

when he
'

started from
it

Wearmouth on
By

his pilgrimage to

Roine."
of.

Mere

is

a pro-

cessional cross or crosier that

spoken

the end of the eleventh century the custom formally bein (jreat

gan, both

Hritain

and on the Continent,

for all archr,

bishops to have carried before them, by one of


their chaplains, a staff, terminated, not like that

^'"^ century,

of a bishop, with a crook like a shepherd's, but with a small

cross richly
its

ornamented with

jewels.

Romish

authorities claim

origin
in

from that See.

Afterwards, primates, then archits

bishops

some parts

of Christendom, were allowed


of

use,

and by the beginning


general insignia of the

the twelfth century,

it

became

latter.

Formerh', the ceremony of the reception of the Cross by


the Archbishop of Canterbury was very impressive.

As

the
of

Primate of

all

England rode slowly through

his

Manner

See Upon the day of his enthronization, he was

Reception of
the Cross.

met by

a long procession, in the midst of which


of the

came one
this

monks

of Christ's Church, bearing the archi-

episcopal cross.

When

the archbishop caught the

first

view of
Crosier.

he threw himself from his horse down upon the earth,


in

and

this attitude of reverence

and humility awaited with

outstretched arms the approach of the sacred symbol.


the

Then

""aiy of Terms used in Brit>sh Heraldry.

F"^

monk who

bore the cross, standing over him. warned the

prelate of his future duty to love, defend,

and govern well the Church


into the

entrusted to his pastoral charge.


'

The Cross was then put


vol.
ii.,

hands

Rock, Chureli of Our Fathers,

p. 223.

238

History of the Cross


of the archbishop,

who
it

received

it

kneeling, and im-

mediately transferred

to that chaplain

whom
Then

he had
arising

chosen for his cross bearer, or n-orscr.

from the ground the archbishop followed the procession, which,

chanting Psalms, brought him to the walls

of Canterbury.

When

the gates were reached, the pri-

mate, putting

off his shoes,

proceeded barefoot, even


being robed

up to the high
in his
first

altar of his cathedral, where,


\\'k />iil!iiiiii,

chasuble and wearing


lie

or pall, for the

time,

consecrated the holy Eucharist, and was


in his chair.

in

due form installed

The
touched

first, last,

and only time when the archbishop

his cross,

was upon
it

this first primatical visit to

his cathedral; ever after

was borne by

his croyscr.

At those
do
so,

parts of the liturgy where the bishop should


left

the archbishop held in his


staff,

hand the usual


cross.'

pastoral

not

his

arcliiepiscopal

Collier

says that the arcliiepiscopal cross was delivered before

the

pall.'

Rock, on the contrary, says: " Until he had

gotten his pall from the

Roman

Pontiff,

no archbishop
;

might

let

the cross be carried before

him hence
off

it

was
'

that S. Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury, admonished

Samuel, Bishop of Dublin, to leave

doing so."

The
tiquity.
'

origin of the pastoral staff has been lost in an-

Some have

traced

it

to the

Roman

Litiiiis,*

we

read of

Rock, Church of our Fathers, vol. ii., p. 227. In the Golden Legend Thomas a Becket's martyrdom: " And one Syr Edwarde Gryme

that was his crovser put forth his aniie with the crosse to here of the stroke, and the stroke smote the Crosse on sondre, and his arme ahiioost of." Ed. Wynkyn de Worde, fol. lx\i. Although the archbishops always had their crosses home before them by their baguli or croyser, never touching Crosier.
it

with their

own

hands, save on the day of their consecration, yet of S.

we read that on one occasion he entered Parliament From Lee's Glossary. carrying in his own hand his cross and refusing to allow another to do his Rock gives other instances: office, although the Bishop of Hereford proffered his services.

Thomas

a Becket

Church of Our Fathers,


-

vol.

ii,,

p. 22S.

Eccles. Hist.,

iii.,

p. 450.

Church of Our Fathers, vol. ii., p. 225. The Lituus was ke]3t in the capital from the time of Romulus, but was lost when the Gauls sacked Rome. Afterwards it was found liuried deep in the ashes while everything else was con^

sumed.
vol. xix.

Plutarch,

Life of

Xuma

see also

"Lituus

of the Ancient

'Roma.n&," Archicologia,

Tlic Crosier
but
it

and Pastoral

Staff
"

239
tlie

h.is

descended from more ancient times.


in

From
in

earliest

monuments
of Greece

sacred or profane art


Sicily, as well as

from

the most archaic

fictile

vases

and

from the oldest frescoes


all

The Pastoral
^^'^"

the

Roman Catacombs, we
e\'er\;

find that duriiiL;

perioils, anil

amon;4

nalion, a waiul was consitlered the


it

emblem

of

power and

command
to be, or

so has

continued

and

still is,

under one form


the the
I

another,

from
to
'

King's
lowliest

sceptre

down

staff of office."

Icmier places

a royal sceptre in the hantl of


Achilles.

In ancient mytholo-

gies the gods are


this

armed with
power.
as

insignia

of

To
his

Mercury's

caduceus,

symbolic wand, especially when

conducting the souls of the departed,

reference

has already
staff

been made.

The curved

Tau-Shaped Pastoral Staff of Carved Ivory, Limburg. From Lee's Glossary.

of the Egyptian deities

might

serve as a pattern for a

modern
a

pastoral

staff."

When

the

God

of Israel

sent

Moses

to deliver his people, a rod


,

was the instrument

of his mira-

cles (E.\. iv.

20);

when

token was to be given of a perpetuated delelaid

gated authority, Aaron's rod

up before the Lord budded and

brought forth (Numb,

xvii., 8).

The

origin of the pastoral staff

was probably to support the feebleflock,

ness of the aged shepherd of the

little

but

in

time

it

became the
In the serv-

acknowledged emblem
ice,

of the overseeing care of a bishop.

during the

reatliiig

of the Gospel, the staves were laid down.


is

That

there was a practical, as well as a symbolical use of these staves

shown

by examples both ancient and modern.

Severius. Bishop of Cologne,


staff.

who

died A.

I).

400, used his as a walking

In the Greek Church at

the present day the staves are barely higher than the hand.

The
'

earliest

example
Our
it

of a pastoral staff to
vol.
ii.,

which we can
tlie

refer with

Rock, Church of

Fathers,
will

p. 183.
in

"The Egytian
Egyf'lians, vol.
ii.,

deities, as

be remembered, bear
staff,

one hand

crux

aiisatn, in

tlie

other they usually carry a curved


p. 266.

the Egyptian symbol of purity.

Wilkinson, Aiuiciit

240

History of the Cross


precision
387.
is

that of Gaudentius, Bishop of Brescia,

cir.

A.D.

After that time

we

find that Caesarius,

Bishop of

Aries, A.D. 502-542,'


Early Example.

who
The

has been claimed


his staff

by some

as the inventor,

had

borne

before him by one of his clerks.

fourth Council of

Toledo, A.D. 589, decreed that

if

a bishop were unjustly deIsidore,

osed, his staff with other insignia shall be returned.

Bishop of Seville, A.D. 595-636,

is

our next witness; contem-

porary with him was S. Remigius,

who

died about this time,

nd bequeathed to one of
figiiratam.
r

his friends

Cambuttam argcntam

"The

very word, too," says Rock, " Camhuttci,


is

crook-headed walking-stick,

borrowed by the Church from


British

the Armoric, or rather, our

own

tongue."

"

In Magri's Hicrolcxicou are engravings of the pastoral staves


of S.

Gregory the Great, A.D. 590, and Gelasius


is

II.,

A.D. 1118.

The former
In
kZ'^n

really a crosier, as
is

it

bears a

little

cross on its

top; the latter


tlie

terminated with an egg-shaped knob.'


all

monastery of Vallombrosa are preserved

the pas-

toral staves from the time of the founder, Gualbert, in the

eleventh century, to the present day.

The

first

is

a simple

Tau, the next somewhat resembles an adze, and gradually the

head bends into a crook.'


from a consecration service.

In the early

Anglo-Saxon Church

the termination was a knob, as

may be

seen from the cut given

(Sec page 2^3.)


in this

The Greek Church


a^'^R

has preserved

matter, as in

more
staff,

important ones, a closer adherence to the customs of the early


Catholic Church, the pateressa, or pastoral
Pastoral Staff
in the

Greek

being a Straight stick used to lean upon, and not

much
serpents.
S.

higher than the hand

it

was usually made


from the icon of

of ebony and ivory, the handle often formed of intertwining

Fig.

is

the usual form

Fig. 2

is

Demetrius of Rostoff.'
'

(See page 2S2.)


vol.
ii.,

Rock, Church of Our Fathers,

p.

182, note.

Pastoral
Staff.
,

'^Ibid., p. 184.

'See "Bacillus" and " Mitra."


..

Magri, Venice, ed. 1735, quoted in Rock,

From Lees
^'

vol.

II.,

p. 200, note.
1

4^ ,\ n Forsyth, Italy,
^

p. 83.
vol.
i.,

Neale, Hist. Eastern Church, Introduction,


p.

p.

314; see also King,

Greek Church in Russia,

38 and plates

vii., ix.

The

Crosier and Pastoral Staff

241

In the twelfth century pastoral staves were slightly ornamented, per-

haps a century

earlier.
is

fan-shaped

staff,

j^resumed to be of
the South

tlie

eleventh century,

one of the ornaments

of

Ornamentation.

Kensington Museum, acquired

at the cost of i^200.

In the

fourteenth and fifteenth centuries ivory, gold,


freely used, so that the staff, apart

silver,

and enamel were

from

its

artistic value,

was

of great
e\-en

worth and became a temptation


to
prelates,
for
it

is

rccortled

that

Odo, Bishop

of

Bayeux,

stole (" conPistol

veyed," as the more courtly

would express the

act of such a high

dignitary) a staff from


edral.'

Durham Cath-

Sometimes the staves were made


of

bone and wood, symbolizing the

hardness of the

Law and

sy^bHsm

of

the mildness of the Cospel.

Material,

The crook reminded the


to reclaim the
is

bear-

ers of a shepherd's office to restrain

and

wandering lambs.
iron, for

The lower end

shod with

the motto must be appropriate


" Ciirva
traliit iiiifes

Pars pit ii;^it acuta

rehelles."

Pastoral Staff,

From

Lee's

C/djjrtrj'.

Often on the curvature was inscribed " Diim iratus fucris miscricordia;
rccordabcris, nc ob culpain grcgis ira tiirbct in Pastorc
/.

ociilaiii

rationis

"

c," When

thou

art angry,

thou shalt remember mercy,

lest

wrath for

the sin of the people disturb the discernment of judgment in the pastor." Sometimes upon the knob separating the crook, or " cruche-head," as it

was anciently
bishop that he

called,
is

from the

.staff,

was the word homo, to remind the


and near the iron ferule

of like passions with his flock,

was parcc,
accorded."
'

spare, lest he should forget that to the merciful only

mercy

is

Upon

the knob of the pastoral staff of Raguefredus, Bishop


vol.
i.,

Dugdale, Monasticon,

p. 516.

Durandus sums up the whole. " At the consecration ^Aecipe, baeulum pastorales officii, ut sis in corrigendis
'

of a bishop the consecrator says to him,


vitiis

pii salvius.'

The

apostle says

242
of Chartres,

History of the Cross


who
died A.D. 960, were represented
six vices

overcome

by

their corresponding virtues.


Faith, Chastity, Charity,

Temperance, Bounty,

Peace,
IdoLitry, Iin])urity, Envy, Ghittony, Avarice,
Strife.'

In the twelfth and thirteenth centuries the

head was often ornamented with symboHc


ornamentation
of the Crook.
"'^^'^-

fig-

s"ch as

S.

Michacl slaying the

dragon, the serpent being formed

by the
and

crook,''

an alkision to the rod of Moses,


of

also the

symbol

Prudence and Wisdom.

The unicorn was


It is

also appropriately used.

an early Christian symbol, adopted from


for
it

remote antiquity;

appears

among

the

Egyptian hieroglyphics and the


mals
Pastoral Staff with

allegorical ani-

in

the Persian mythology

it is

represented

Knob.

on the walls of Persepolis, sometimes with, at From others without, wings, engaged in combat with
a lion.

Rock's Church of Our Fathers.

The

Christians also adopted the pagan

significance as a

symbol
it

of Purity

and Strength, to which they added


if

that of Chastity, as

was believed that

the animal soiled

its skin, it
2.
i.

pined away and died.

The horn
it

of the unicorn

was often
it

used

b_\-

the Fathers as a type of the Cross,' for which

had

x^^ ^r^

also a peculiar significance,


in

being popularly supposed that

cups
Cor.

made from
'

this material poison

became innocuous.
By
the pastoral rod or staff

(I

iv. 21),

Shall

come

to

you with a rod?'

may be

understood the sacerdotal power which Christ conferred when

He

sent

Moses was sent into Egypt with a rod. The staff, therefore, may be viewed as a token both from the Law and the Gospel. For Moses at the command of tlie Lord had a rod which performed the most stupendous miracles. By the pastoral staff is likewise understood the authority of doctrine. For by it the infirm are supported, the wavering are confirmed, those going astray are drawn to repentance. It resembles, and is called a crook, in allusion to that used by shepherds to draw back and recall the sheep of their flock which have gone astray." Pugin, Glossary, art. " Pastoral Staff."
the Apostles to preach,
tliem to take staves.
/bid.
^

commanding

Forms
iii.,

of

Pistolesi, // Valicano, vol.

Pateressa.
plate Ixxiii.
;

^Justin Martyr on Deut. xxxiii. 17, " His horns are like the horns of unicorns

with them

he shall push the people together to the ends of the earth."

Dial, with Typho,, 91.

The
Ill

Crosier and Pastoral Staff


emblem

243

the Miikllr Ages, the uiiiconi was an

of the Incarnation.

for

it

was supposed that

it

could be caught ami tamed only by a pure

virgin; hence in art, the virgin

became
its

a type of the blessed Virgin, the


it

unicorn that of her Son.

From

love of solitude

was judged

to be

peculiarly ap[>n)priate to the staff of an abbot.

An
of

early
is

example

is

the staff of S. Boniface,


is

which
tile

preserved at Fulda, Germany, and

seventh or eighth century.'

Bishops were formerly in\-ested with the


pastoral staff and ring by the king.
S.

Anselm

was hurried
,,,.,,.
,,
,

into the presence of


,

William Ivulus. and


ofifice

tiiese insignia

...

Bishops Receive the staff from


'

of

being thrust upon him, he


into the

'"^'

was forced

Church while the Tc Dcuin


to his eleva-

Pastoral Staff of S. Boniface.

was chanted, although he objected


mandy."

From Twining's

Sytiilwh.

tion to the See of Canterbur\- on the

ground of being a subject


crook was

of

Nor-

As
into

a reminder of delegated authoritv the

Crook Turned

turned toward the consecrator when he delivered the

11 the hand
1

of the

1-1 ordamed
Two

staff

Toward

the Bishop.

prelate.

In

modern times the Pope does not use

a pastoral staff except in the

diocese of Treves.

reasons are assigned by


is

Thomas Aquinas and


xhe Pope's use
of the staff,

Durandus; one that the Pope's power

not limited (the

curvature of staff implying jurisdiction over a fold as a

shepherd, whilst the Pontiff claims unlimited sovereignty, the other, in

commemoration
S.

of a miracle.

S. Eucharius, the first


staff w'hich

bishop of Treves,

raised to life his friend S. Peter.

Maturus by the

he received from

Honorius, Autun, and Peter of Cluny record this miracle.

Egbert,

Archbishop

of

Treves,

A.n.

980,

obtained
it

this

staff

from

Werinus, Archbishop of Cologne, to which place

had been transferred


engraved on
its

by the former Archbishop Bruno.


But that the Bishops of Rome,
able.

This history

is

case.*

in early times,

used staves

is

indubit-

The
II.

staves of Gregory the Great and Gelasius have been referred to.

Paschal

was consecrated
staff
in

A.I).

1099,

and special mention

is

made

of

the placing of the

his hand.
^ *

Until the twelth century at least,


I'urchas.

'

'Twining, Symbols, pi. Ixxxv,, fig. i. Eadmer, Hist. Cantuar, lib. i., p. 16.

Pugin, Glossary,

Directorium AngUcanitnt, art. " Pope."

p. 157.

244
it

History of the Cross


this

seems that

symbol of Episcopal

jurisdiction

was used

in

the See of

S.

Peter as well as in others.

Luitprand, Bishop of Cremona A.D. 964,

was an eye-witness of the deposition of Pope Benedict V. He says, " After this he put off from him the pallium, which together with the
pastoral staff that he carried in his
staff

hand he gave up
to the people."
'

to the Pope,

which

the Pope broke and showed


a bishop

it

When

was deposed we have seen that

his staff

was taken
at

from him and sometimes broken.


Staff

The Bishop

of Dorchester,

the

Synod held bv Leo IX., had


Taken
at

great difficulty in preventit

Away

ing his Staff


,
.

from being broken, as


r
\

was proved that


i-

Deposition.

he was ignorant of

his

duties.

According to

tradition,

i--

when

the Archbishop Lanfranc, at the desire of William the Conqueror,


S.

would deprive

Wulstan, Bishop of Worcester, of

his diocese,

because

the Anglo-Saxon prelate could not speak the language of the Normans, S. Wulstan refused to give up his bislmpric to any one save his old sovereign,

and proceeding to

his grave in the

Church

of Westminster,

where
staff

the council of the bishops was then assembled, thrust his pastoral
into the marble

tomb

of the late King,

Edward the

Confessor, and
it

left it

standing.

The

grave recognized the pious trust, and retained


its

so firmly
it."

fixed that no

hand but that of

rightful

owner could withdraw

The

pastoral staff was also given to abbots and abbesses at their con-

secration.
Given Abbots and Abbesses.
staff
to

The

latter also received a ring,

which was not bestowed upon


According to c
staff,

the former unless his were a mitred abbey. .

the present I-loman Pontifical, the abbots receive the

but not the abbesses.

In the English convents under the


is

Roman
It

rule, a

remembrance

of

it,

according to the " Sarum use,"


side of their chair in the choir.*

pre-

served, a staff being placed

by the
in

has been asserted that

monuments, abbots

are distinguished

from bishops by holding the


benediction with the
'

staff in

the right hand while bestowing the

left,

but this rule was not strictly observed."


ii..

An
would

seem
'

that

Rock, Church of Our Fathers, vol. Leo was deposed, not Benedict.
;

p.

206, note.

Acconliiig to

Mosheim

it

Henry of Huntington, Hist., Ivi. Archaologia, xvii., p. 37. Ailredus Abbas Rievallis de Vita et Miramlis Edwardi Conf. Dfcem Scriptores, quoted in Rock, Church of Otir Fathers, vol. ii., p. ig6.
'Ibid., p.

col.

406,

One

of

".Several church monuments show us abbesses with the pastoral staff." 194. Lady Montacute's daughters, who became an abbess, is represented on her tomb in
left

Oxford Cathedral, " having her staff leaning against her ^ Oxford Glossary of Heraldry, art. " Crosier."

shoulder."

The
cnoiicous statement
his
stall'
is

Crosier and Pastoral Staff


given by a high aiithorit}tiiat

245

" a bishop carried

with

the'

cmok

turned outwards, to denote his jurisdiction o\-er


/.

a diocese," an abbot with his inward,

;.

" towards

liini-

Manner
'"'^
'

or
^

HoM^'^
'

self to signify that his jurisdiction reached over the

mem-

bers of his
to
tile

own

house.'

But there

is

nothing
of

in

an\' rituaUstic writer

favor such a view,' and the testimony


position of
tlic

the

monuments

is,

that
to

staff

and hand

in

benediction

was common

both.

The

l-!rass

of

Jolm Estne}^ Abbot


Cuthbert
cffig}'

of Westminster, A.D.

1498,

represents him w ith the crook turned outwards and giving his blessing

with the right liand.


inward.
Loutercll

S.

is

represented holding his

staff

turned
In the

So

also

is

the

of a bishop in

Temple

Cluirch. In

Psalter an abbess turns her staff outwartls.


is

Litchfield

Cathedral there
It

a statue of a bishop with the crook turned inward.^


staff,

has also been asserted that the abbot's

by way

of distinction

from that of a bishop, must have it below the crook; that this " was generall}- hud aside by the abbots of exempt
a long linen na])kin attached to

abbeys, but

is

always seen attached to the crosiers of abbesses."

'

The

only formal sanction for such a rule came from S. Charles Borromeo,
there
is

no rubrical authority and, whatever

may have been

the custom

in Italy diu'ing

the time of the archbishops of Milan, no such distinction

was made

in

England.^

The
the

vcxillnni probably

was not a mark

of difTerence, but

merely a

siidariiun, or napkin,

used to prevent the

staff

from being tarnished by


vcxiiiuma
a

warmth

of the hand, or the copper beneath the gilding

from giving to the hantl an unpleasant odor.


'

This
\u\.
iii.,

veil

was

sudanum.

Mabkell,

Monumenta

Kitiialia

EccUsue Anglicana,

p. 137.

Rock, Church of Our Fathers, vol. ii., p. 210. ^ Fur In the ulher examples, see Ibid., p. 20S also Cutts, Slabs and Monuments. moiuimental tomb of Bishop B. T. Onderdonk (the exquisite workmanship of that accomplished In arcliitect, Richard Upjohn), in Trinity Church, New York, the crook is turned inward.
'
;

of an archteologist may, perhaps, discover that it was synilmlical of from the duties of his office. * Gloss, of Heraldry, "Crosier." Milner, on the " Limerick Crosier," Archsologia, vol. xxii. * ^^ Baeitlus pastoralis orario atit siidario non ornatur si episeopalis est quo insigni abhatialis ab illo distinguitur," Acta Keel. Mediolan. De Baeulo Pastorali Instruct.

future years

some wiseacre

his suspension

Supell. Ecil
staff of

lib. ii., p.

627, quoted in Rock, vol.

ii..

p. 211.
;

The vexillum

is

attached to the
cir.

Bishop John de Sheppy, of Rochester, Ob. 1360

Bishop Vasey of Exeter,

sixteenth

John Estney, Abbot of Westminster, 1498. The Brass of Bishop Oldham of Exeter represents his as rolled two or three times around his staff. It is shown also upon the staff of William of Wykeham in Winchester Cathedral. Rock, vol. ii., p. 211, Gentleman's Mag.,
cent.
;

Dec,

lS(')3, p.

6g2.

In the

Nuremberge Chronicle
is

are

many woodcuts

of bishops with the

napkin

fastened by a string to the top, which

capped by a funnel-shaped ornament.

246

History of the Cross


either of white silk, or of linen, with a gold fringe at the lower
it.

made

edge, and one or more tassels depending from

An

interesting relic, a crosier or pastoral staff belonging to the nonJ

Crosier Belonging
to Non-jurors.

iurors was,

until
,

iS^g, ^ ^^ preserved

in

the family of John


-^ -'

Crosslcy, Esq.

of Scaitcliffe, near

Todmer, England.

Pastoral staves were borne before the coffin at funerals, and either

buried \vith the deceased prelate, or suspended over the tomb.

When
some-

represented on the

tomb they were sometimes placed on the


at other

right,

times on the

left

hand;

times athwart the effigy.


lost.

There may

have been a symbolical reason which has been

The
tinued

use of the pastoral

staff, crosier,

and processional cross has con-

almost

without

intermission

from the time that the Church

emerged from the Catacombs unto


, Holy Present at
,

Communion.

this day. The first Prayer-Book of Edward VI. ordered that " whenever the Bishop shall cele^ brate the Holy Communion in the church or execute any
. . .

other public ministration, he shall have

\\\?.

pastoral slaff

{wX^xi,

hand, or else borne or holden before by his chaplain."


Pastoral staves were carried at the coronation of

Edward VI. and


i.

of

Elizabeth, at the latter,

by Archbishop Cranmer
"

himself,

c, probably

by

his croyscr.

The

Hieritrgia Atiglicana gives instances from that time

to the present.'

Among others,
. . .

The

crosier or pastoral crook of

Arch-

bishop Laud with the walking


ascent to the scaffold
College, Oxford."
Catholic,
crosier.

stick, which supported his steps in his have been lately deposited " in S. John's

At the

funeral of that stout anti-Romanist and true


of

John Cosin, Bishop

Durham,

1671, the

York herald bore


is

his

The

last

instance mentioned in the Hicrurgia Aiiglicana


1706.

that

of Bishop

Mews,

The

Erastian period of the Church intervenes; after the lapse of one


fifty

hundred and

years, the crosier

was borne

at

the funeral of Bishop


in

Doane, and since then, there have been several other instances, both
the Anglican and in the American branches of the Church.

As

in

other ecclesiastical work, so in the lesser paraphernalia of the


skill

Church, the
Irish Pastoral ^'^^^^'

of Ireland during the

Middle Ages deserves special

mention.

Mitres, bells, vestments of glorious handiwork

have been preserved, enough to make us mourn over the


Crosiers and pastoral staves, rich in workmanship, and
'

treasures lost.
'

Hicrurgia Atiglicana, pp. 8i-Sg.

Ingraliam, Mt-moriah of Oxford, Hierurgia. p. S3.

The
hallowed with pious

Crosier and Pastoral

Staff"

247
still

Icl^ciuIs, tile dcliL;lit of

;m arch.'Eologist,

exist in

private collections and in that of the Irish

Academy.
and

For example, the


in

pastoral staves of S. Fincluie in Briyoun, and of S. IMLiran

I'ahan.

These are

prized, not so

much

for their jewels

artistic value, as for

their miraculous virtues, afTordin|jan oath to the conuiion ])eople, which,

as recorded

by

(iiraldus Cambreiisis in

85,

was esteemed much more

bindin^r than

one upon the holy

(iospels.'

Pre-eminent

known by the

among staves is name of the " Staff

the crosier of S. Patrick, commonly of Jesus " it was held in the greatest
;

re\-crence, not onlv

on accovmt of the belief that

it

had once

S. Patrick s

belonged to the Apostle of Ireland, but from the legend


w'hich connects
it

Crosier,

No mention is made of this by the Saint's most ancient biographers, but such a trifle must not interwith our Saviour himself.
fere

with the antiquarian's enjoyment of the history as delivered by


in
I I

Joceline

85.

S. Patrick,

moved

b\'

divine instinct or anjelick revelation, visited


in the

one Justus, an ascetick, who inhabited an Island

Tyrrhene Sea, a
which he
In this

man
antl

of

exemplary virtue and most holy


he

life.

After mutual salutations


staff

discourse,

he jjresented the Irish apostle with a

a\-erred

recei\'ed

from the hands of Jesus Christ himself.


in

island were

some men

the bloom of youth, and others

who appeared
at this

aged and decrepit;

S. Patrick

conversing with them, found that these

aged persons were the sons of the seemingly young.

Astonished

miraculous appearance, he was told that from their infancy they had
served God, that they were constantly employed
their doors were
in

works of charity, and

open to the

traveller

and distressed; that one night a


hand, and they accommodated
the morning he blessed

stranger

came

to

them with a

staff in his
in

him

said
last

to the best of their


'

power; that

them and
staff

am

Jesus Christ, Avhom you ha\'e always faithfully served, but

night you received

me

in

my

pro[)er person.'

He
It

then gave his

to their spiritual father with directions to deliver


Patrick,

to a stranger

named

who would
left

shortly visit them; In saying this

He

ascended Into

heaven, and

us in that state of juvenility in

which you behold us;

and our sons, then young, are the old decrepit persons you now see."
Joceline goes on to relate that with this staff our apostle gathered every

venomous creature
'

in

the island on the top of the mountain of Cruagh


Ilisl.

Mam,

of the Ch. in Ii\land,

vol.

i.,

p. 6S.

248

History of the Cross


in

Phadraug

the County of Mayo, and then precipitated

them

into the

ocean. " When S. Malachy


cited,

became primate,"

as related

by an author

lately

who had usurped the primatial See carried the staff away from Armagh; and such was the importance attached to the possession of it that many persons in consequence adhered to the usurper. But Nigellus did not retain it long; it was again restored to Armagh,"
where
it

" Nigellus,

was made an object

of superstitious veneration.

In the time

of Giraldus Cambrensis, in 11 77, during a pillage of the city


it

and abbey,

was stolen and carried


in

to Dublin.

This theft was of such great im-

portance

the estimation of that superstitious age, as to merit a record


it

in the annals of the country, as the breaking of

had been recorded on


and became

a former occasion in 1027.

Being then presented to the Cathedral of the


care,

Blessed Trinity,

it

was there preserved with reverential


I.

the subject of a miracle in 145

During

a great tempest, the chest, con-

taining the Staff of Jesus and other


falling in

relics,

was broken to pieces by the


entirely

of the east

window, but the

staff,

undamaged, was
relics

found lying on the top of the rubbish, although the other


entirely buried

were

under

it.'

An

interesting historical relic has been preserved in Canada.

At the

consecration of the
crosier used
S. Filliam,

Roman Bishop of Toronto, in 1859, ^^"^^ crook of the by Bishop De Carbonel was one which formerly belonged to
at the blessing of the Scottish

and was borne by him


It

army

at

Bannockburn.

was the

gift of

James

III., in 1487, to

John Daire or

Dewar.

It is

of solid silver
staff

and contains
gift

a relic covered with white stone.''

Bishop Doane's
It

was a
staff

from Mr. Beresford Hope of England.

was a simple pastoral


.

carved of the ancient oak which had been


!r>
^

. Bishop Doane
_,

removed
It is

in
in

the restoration of S. Augustine's, Canterbury. J


the possession of his son, the Bishop of Albany.

^^^^-

now

The

first

pastoral staff ever


in 1866.
It is

Bishop Hopkins
Bishop Hopkins's
^'^'^-

country, was that given to " adorned with color, silver, gilt, of oak,
in this
is

made

^"^ enamel.
lierd

In the crook

the figure of the

Good Shep-

standing with a lamb in his arms and a sheep on either

side, all of silver.

Eight enamelled medallions on the knob give the


S.

condensed apostolic succession from


'

Paul through S. Augustine of


quoted
P-

Warburton, History of Dublin,


i.,

vol.

i.,

p. 181,

in

Mant's History of the Church in


7, 1859.

Ireland, vol.

p. 68.

'

Gentleman' s Mag., 1853,

420; yVVzo York Times, Dec.

The

Crosier and Pastoral Staff


'

249
cross
is

Canterbury, Matlhcw Parker, and Bishop WMiite. "


Celtic pattern, richly carved
feet

"

The

of the
is

on

its

four faces.

The upper

piece

five

high and four feet across the arms; the shaft being seven feet; and
in

the steps (three height fifteen

number) are each one foot

in height,

making the

entire

feet.

heart of the Cross, with the

The western face has monograms of


Dove
its

the descending

Dove on the
full-

the sacred names; and

length figures of the Twelve Apostles, three in each arm of the Cross.

The

seven-fold rays of the


of the shaft,

pass behind the lower three

down the
grasped

whole

on which appears the ]5ishop's pastoral


crook turned outward.
turn

staff

b}- his left

hand, and with


'

All around are

stars

which signify

those

who

many

to righteousness.'

On

the

eastern face are the

more personal mementos.

The

other two sides

bear the vine, with leaves, tendrils, and bunches of ripe grapes, running

up over the ends

of the

arms and to the gabled top.

circular

crown
each

supports the arms relieved by four pierced openings, and marked


division

in

by seven small knobs showing that the crown


Cost about one thousand dollars.'
p. 358.

is

a spiritual

crown."
'

Life of Bishop Hopkins,


Ibid.
,

'

p.

442, note.

CHAPTER

IX

PECTORAL CROSSES

LONG before the


toral
. ^u Ante-Chnstian

Cliristian era, Oriental nations

made

use of pec-

ornaments which would seem to have served some representative r^ purpose, l^


'

from the

fact

tliat

even after death they J


in

Pectoral Cross,

accompanicd the wearer, and are found

the sepulchres

of various ancient peoples.

As

a symbol of the deity, of sanctity, of

eternal

life,

or of blessing, they were also depicted on the breast of male

figures in the mural decoration of

Egyptian and Etruscan tombs.


bearing tribute, having around their

picture found in

Thebes, with the date of the nineteenth dynasty,

about iioo

B.C., represents Asiatics

necks crosses of equal limb.

Wilkinson,

in

his

Ancient

Egypt, gives the same form on the breast of two warriors,

and Rossilini also on the neck of an Asiatic'


form
CrossWombyone
of
is

Another

portrayed on a warrior, one of the " Seven Chiefs

against Thebes," about 1200 B.C., painted on an Etrus-

can alabaster vase at Volterra,


t ^"^
t

Italy.''
1

the

"Seven
against
circa

t-.

Chiefs

^'''^

British

Thebes,"

Samsi-Vul IV.,

Museum, we have King of Assyria, B.C.

t..^

a representation of
835, wearing a pec-

From Brocks

,',

1 he

toral cross quite similar to the '

Maltese of modern date.

Cross: Heatliai

and about three times the size of the cut.


jjg^.gj
j.^

This

is

be-

andChnstia,,.

indicate that the wearer

was not only a king, but

a priest.
of Elisha.
eiifigy in

He
stone

flourished before the era of Isaiah, and was a contemporary

Another Assyrian monarch, Assur-Nazir-Pal, whose imposing

may

be seen

in

the same

museum,

is

also decorated with

a similar cross.

Dr. Schliemann discovered at MyceiiE and Hissarlik, ancient Troy, necklaces and pendants, in the shape

the supposed
of crosses
1

site of

and

stars

formed of combined
Ixx.

crosses,

and others

in

the form
p. So.

Momimcnti M. R. M.,

Gdiitlcman's

Mag., 1863,

250

Pectoral Crosses
of four IciU'es, wrought in thin gold
detail.

251

work with chiboratcly ornamental

The

cross as a sign of Christianity

diil

not at

first

come

into public

use in the Church, probably not until the time of Constantine, after

persecution had ceased, anti '^

when the sacred badge


Inasmuch
in

00

miglit
Antiquity of Pectorai christian
Crosses.

be regarded with proper respect.

as amulets

appear to have been wurn

the most ancient times, the

adoption of the Christian symbol for this purpose became a matter of


course.'

The

earliest

mention that we
is

find of the Christian use of a cross sus-

pended from the neck,


Great wore a cross, but
Justin,
.\.l).

that of I'ojie Hilarius, AA). 461.

Gregory the

its

precise form

is

not mentioned.
cross.

519, presented to the

Pope a pectoral
that of

The Emperor The Agnus Dei


in

stands in the centre, the bust-length figure of our Lord


benediction
is

the act of

placed at the upper end

S. John below.

The Emperor and

his

wife

Flavia

Euphemia
at

are at the transv-erse ends.

In the mosaics which adorn the Oratory of S.

Venantius

Rome, completed
is

in the

seventh

century, the blessed Virgin

represented with

a Greek pectoral cross on her bosom.''

Nicephorus, A.D. 811, sent to Leo IIL a


golden pectoral cross enclosing some portions
of the true Cross.
.,
,

But
,

it

was not
,

until the fourteenth


it

Pectoral Cross as Cross

Worn by Samsi-Vul
^
^^
"
'

IV.,
''

century that
-I

an Episcopal

j^j

was reckoned among the Epis,

Ornament.

i copal ornaments, '

u when
its
it

special prayers

11.'

were

Museum. From Brock's Tnc


British
,

^/;^,

,/ Cliristian.

,,-,
and

Cross

Hca-

used at the time of

bestowal.

When
therefore

displayed,
it

was a symbol

of jurisdiction,

symbol

of

was concealed when a

bisho]i entered the dio-

jurisdiction.

cese of another.

The custom
call

of wearing pectoral crosses, or cnkolpia as the

Greeks

them, appears to have been more common,

among

the laics as well


a relic of

as clergy, in the Eastern than in the


'

Western Church, and

no

Cianipini, Vetera

Monimenla,

toni.

ii.,

p. 108, tab. xxxi.

'

This seems a more reasonable

orii^in

tlian that

assigned by Innocent III.,

who

says that

the Bishop wears a pectoral cross in imitation of the Jewish


plate on his brow.

High

Priest's breast-plate or the

gold

Walcott,

Sacred Archaology,

art.

" Cross, Pectoral."

^^.^^^^a-Ksz^j^

Pectoral Crosses
slii^ht

-'Dj

value from an historical point of view


Cathedral, England.
It is

is

preserved in the library of

Durham

the Cross of Greek form taken from

the breast of S. Cuthbert (seventh century)

when

his

tmnh was opened

liiikolpia

were not ahvaws crucito

form.

The name properly belongs


breast.

reli(iuaries of

any shape worn suspend.Sometimes they


A"/'

ed on the

were square bearing the monogram


or AD., at other times they were
in

the

form of small bottles of gold.


ory the Great,
it

Greg-

is

said,

first

made

them

cruciform.

Walcott mentions

an ancient pectoral cross, worn by a


bisho;), bearing the appropriate

motto,

Emmanuel, God with


is

us,

the Cross

Life to me, to thee Death, an en'

emy.

'
'

In Eabarte"s
till-

Handbook of Arts of Middle Ages and Renaissance is


a

given
cross

curious
in

H\'zantine pectoral

now

the possession of A. B.
It is

Hope, Esq.

formed of two enreli-

amelled gold plates, making a


quary.

On

the

one side

is

Christ
his

crowned with a cruciform nimbus,


over his head

feet on a suppcdaneuui and separated;


is

the

monogram.
is

The
by

presence of the Father

indicated

an

initial n(ari]p), at
is

the foot of the


:

Cross

the skull of

Adam

the blessed

Virgin and S. John occupy their re- Byzantine Pectoral Cross. From Lal.arte's spective places, and the words, " Be- tiandbook of the Arts of the MuUU Ages. hold thy Son " are inscribed. S. John Baptist, S. Paul, S. Peter, and S.

Andrew

appear.

M. Labarte thinks

it

is

of the tenth century, and

M.

Laborde, of the twelfth century."


'

Walcott, Sacred Archccology,

p. 260.

'

Labarte, Handbook, pp.

xxiii.,

no.

254
In the Danish

History of the Cross

Museum

of

Northern Antiquities

is

preserved a most

exquisite reHquary pectoral cross which once belonged to the celebrated


Queen ^ Dagmar
'^'^=,

Oueen Dagmar. '^ -^


it

When

her

tomb was opened about


'

i6no, ^

was found lying on her

breast.
in

She was the daughter


1205,
to

of
of

the

King

of

Bohemia and was wedded,


to the

Waldemar

II.

Denmark.

An

old ballad tells us that on the

morning

after her marriage


gift,

when according

custom she was entitled to her morning

Early on the morrow,


ere it was day, was the Lady Dagmar, For her morning-gifts she '11 pray. They sail' d from tlw atluicst Beyrlaiid?
It
'

Long

"

My

first

bede now

bid, dear,

To my

lowly prayer inclined,


"

Let go poor Bishop Waldemar,

That long-loved uncle mine They sail' d from the alltelest Bexrland.
!

second bede eke I bid now, So fain I ask thee it. Give up, lief lord, all Plough-pennies

"

My

And
They

all in

iron that

sit

"
!

sail' d

from

the athelcst Beyrland.

Of course she became the


dear peace-maker.
altered into

idol of

Denmark.
It

Her name was changed


/.

for

one of more symbolic meaning.

was originally Dragomir,


in

r.

the

This meant nothing


/.

her

new

country.

It

was
But

Dagmar,
2,

<.

the Day-may, the Maiden of the

Dawn.

soon, in 121

of the beloved wife

and queen we read, her husband was

summoned

to find the motlier a corpse, her child sa\'ed

by the severe

Caesarean operation.

" But at his approach her strong love calls back

her soul, and she takes leave of her lord, in that short space having gone

through the pains of Purgatory, so venial had been her sins."

She again

prays for unhappy outlaws, and fettered prisoners, and expires once more
with the words,
"

Night nor day pain none had No fire had come me nigh.

suffer'd.

Had I not laced my sleeves one Sunday, And my gold-cap sticht up high." Queen Dagmar she restcth there in Ringsted.
'

Noblest.

Bohemia.

Pectoral Crosses
Her cyne she stroketh now once more, Her cheeks they were so white
;

255

" Heaven's CMiinies, tliey are ringing for me,

No

h)nger can

bide

"
!

Queen Daginar

s/ie restctli

there in Rin^sted.

May

24, 12 12, her soul

departed to

its

home.
to the Princess Alexandra,

Frederick VII. wishini^ to give a


the future
cross to be

memento

Queen
of

of

England, caused a fac-simile of Queen Dagniar's


a bit of silk, a slip of \-ellum,
Fac-simile of

made, enclosinLj
wood.
"

and a splinter

The

silken stuff

was cut from


Kini;'

Queen Dagmar's

the silken cushion on which the head of Holy Cnut,

and Patron Saint

of

Denmark, was found resting when

his shrine

was

Queen Dagmar's

Cross.

From

Stephens's

Qtic'i:ii

Dngiiiar's Cross.

opened

in

Odense

in

1833.

This pillow

is

now

preserved

in

the Old-

Northern .Museum.
Ages, now
in

The

splint

was taken from a reliquary

of the

Middle

the Old-Northern

Museum,

in wh.ich

it

lay,
it

accompanied
a bit of the
Serictiiii
I'll.

by

a morsel of vellum,

announcing
slip

{de ligito dei) that

was

Cross of Christ.

The

of
ct

parchment bears the words


Patroni Danitc,
S.

de

pitlviiiari Sti Cannti,

Regis

ma nit

Fridcriei

Regis

Daiiiec abscissiiiii " (silk

from the pillow of

Cnut, King and Patron of

Denmark, cut

off

by the hand

of Frederick VII.,

King

of Denmark).'

Ornamenting

this fac-simile cross are


'

two thousand
Cross, 1863.

brilliants

and rose

Stephens,

Qiiceii

Dagmar's

256

History of the Cross


pearls.

diamonds and one hundred and eighteen


copy, doubtless contains
separating
it.

The

original, like its

relics,

but that cannot be ascertained without


it

Upon one

side

bears the figure of the Saviour, A\ith


are five medallions, Christ in
left
;

figures not unlike swans;

upon the other

the centre, the Virgin at his right and S. John at his

S. Basil above,

and

S. Chrj'-sostom below, their names, being abbreviated, are given in

Greek characters.
its

Its

workmanship, and the two

latter saints indicate

Byzantine " The fashion of wearing a cross of gold, merely as an ornament,


origin.
It

is

of late origin.
Cross

may

be traced back to the beginning of the sixteenth

Worn,
an Orna-

century.
^^,j|.j^

portrait of

Anne
of

of Cleves

shows her adorned


attached a jewelled

though unsuitDie, as

three necklaces, to one

which

is

ment,

The mode was revived in the beginning of the The ladies who then went, even to church, in eighteenth century dresses cut very low, wore, as a throat or bosom
cross,

ornament, small diamond Saiiit-Esprits and crosses.


Against
this

profanation

of

symbols,

zealous

^-

fj

^^^

preacher thus indignantly e.xclaimed from the pulpit:


'

//

II

Alas! can the cross, which represents the mor-

IJ;^^^
Cross of the Knights

tification of the flesh,

and the Holy Ghost, author


!

of

all

good thoughts, be more unsuitably placed


pect(5ral crosses

Templars.

Among

should be included the

so-called cross of absolution.


Absolution
Crosses.

In the

Middle Ages, our forefathers would


life,

extend the virtues and power of the Cross, even beyond

hence we sometimes find in sepulchres, a passport of Papal


In the ancient Church of

absolution engraved on metal in the sacred form.


Butteils, near Dieppe,

were exhumed several skeletons bearing upon their

breasts rudely cut crosses of sheet lead, on which was a simple form of absolution similar to that used in the tenth century.

found

at

Meaux, Mayence, Perigueux, Bury

S.

They have also been Edmunds, Chichester, and


preserved at Chichester.

elsewhere.

One

of a bishop, about A.D. 1088.

is

Mabillon, in his annals of the Benedictine Order, records that

when

Abelard died, A.D.


Cross for Abelard Granted at Request of Heloise.

142, Heloise applied to the


' '

Abbot

of

Cluny
It

for

such an

instrument,

Ut scpitlcliro ejus suspcndaiitr. "


it

was granted
be inferred

apparently as a matter of course; hence

may

that the custom of using absolution crosses was not unusual.


'

I)e Barrer.i,

Gems aud Jewels,

p. 297.

CIIAPTI'R X
CONSKCKAIIOX CROSSES
"
I

\'

the laws of Justinian


S"''''

(cir.

A.D. 5^8), no cliurch


first

was

to be be-

_U
vvas to
in

before the bishop had

made

a solemn prayer, and


Origin of Conse<=ration crosses.

fixed the si'^n of the Cross in the place <^ i

where a new church

,_

be erected.

purifying the temples of the heathen


.
. .

crated into Christian

The same custom was observed when they were to be conse.Ami whereas some monks and churches.
.

other orders of men," woukl sometimes presume to set up the sign of the

Cross

in public buildings,

and other places erected

for the di\'ertisenient

of the people; which

was, in effect, a

pretending to make them churches

without the bishop's leave; therefore the Emperor Leo made a decree,
that nothing of this nature should be done

by usurpation

for the future, but


an}- jilace,

whether

it

was to erect a

cross, or bring the relics of a

martyr into

both of these should be done by the direction of the bishops, and not otherwise.

And hence

it is

probably conjectured both by Suicerus and Meuris

sius, that a

bishop's diocese

sometimes
fix

called sai'pnTTi/Biov, that

is,

the
for

district

wherein he had power to

the Cross within his


will signify

own bounds
it."
^

the building of churches.

So the word

both the act of mak-

ing a cross,

and the limits wherein he had power to make

Before the time of Justinian, Theodosius (A.n. 395-408)

commanded
consecration Crosses Comdos.us.

that the Cross should be placed within and upon such temples as had

been used for pagan worship, to

]:)urify

them."
i.1

Hence,
11

111 probably, grew

the use of consecratmn crosses on the walls, manned by Theo..

,1

although the date of their origin


'

is

lost in antiquity.'
iti

.As

'

the Teniiilars and otlier ecclesiastical orders did Bingham, Chris/ian Antiquities, b. viii., chap, ix.,
Tlieod., lib.
i.
;

later limes.

sec. v.

'^Cod.

Tit de Paganis. leg. 25.


rittial,

liiiigham.
be traced
to

Consecration crosses, with


to

Walcott

tliinks m!iy

the fourth century

form of prayer
17

the ninth, yet, by a slip of his pen he would unconsciously date

them

in

the

eleventh century.

See Consecration and Cross of Consecration.

258

History of the Cross

In the Eastern Church at the present time, " although dedication


crosses in the Latin use of the term are
^ . Use in the Eastern Church.

unknown, exterior

crosses in the

fabric of the
j^j^ij

church are more

common
is

than

in

the Western

-would appear to have been so from very early times.


of Syria, there

Throughout the ruined churches

one invariable form


slightly /rt/Zr?, with

of this cross."

The Greek,

the lower limb elongated about one fourth.


like

" In

manner, the exterior of Armenian churches

are covered with them, and the

same thing holds


extent,
of

true

of

Georgia, and, to a certain


'

Greece."

In ancient times, according to Durandus, the

bishop carved upon the corner stone, with his


Number
.

of

own
j^

hands, a cross, which might be t>


' '

Exterior Cross.

Crosses.

considered one of consecration,


j^

al-

Yrom^e^\e.

History of the Holy Eastern Church.

^j^^^

j^

^^^ distinctly SO Stated. '

Durandus
number,

directs that they should be twelve in

and explains the reason for their


secondly, as a

use.

" First, as a terror to evil spirits;


of Christ.

mark
in

of triumph.

For crosses be the banners


of

For even

the

pomp

an earthly sovereign

it

is

customary
set

when any
within
it.

city
. .

hath been yielded, for the imperial standard to be


.

up

Thirdly, that such as look on

them may

call

to

mind
Place

the Passion of Christ by which


their belief in His Passion.

He

hath consecrated His Church, and


it

Whence
(Cant.

is

said in the Canticles,


6.)

'

me

as a signet

upon thy arm.'

viii.

The twelve

lights placed

Lights before the

before thesc crosscs signify the twelve apostles

who have

C rosscs
Anointed with Chrism.

illumined the whole world by the Faith of the Crucified."

They

are anointed with chrism, because not only the four

quarters of the world (signified by the four walls) have been lighted up

" into love," " but have been anointed into purity of conscience, which
is

signified

by the

oil,

and into the savour of a good reputation which


^

is

signified

by the balsam."

Consecration crosses were either painted

in color, as for

example,

in

How

Formed.

S.

Laurencc's Church, Nuremberg, where they are red; on


flciiry,

the Cathedral of Rabston, where they are depicted crosses


'

gold,

Neale, Hist. Eastern Church, Introduction, p. 222,

'

Durandus, Neale's, and Webb's Trans.,

p. 126.

Consecration Crosses
on a blue ground within a
circle of red; or else

259

carved in the stone, and


cir-

sometimes

inlaid with brass.

In Liebfrauenkirche in Treves within

cular panels, angels are represented bearing the crosses.


In the south of h'rance there are

many

instances of the consecration


i. <.,

crosses being in the form of the Labaruiii,

;S-'

In the formation,
'

the perpendicular stem l^ I

is

placed over the horizontal one,


as

and the

latter is

sometimes repeated thus, ^,

on one
England."

_ Crosses in France.

jamb

at

the entrance of Preston Church, Sussex,


is

Another

variation
is

seen in Bar Preston Church, Kent, wliere the horizontal arm

a double cross crosslet.

Consecration Cross.

Consecration Cross.

From

Lee's Glossary.

From

Lee's Glossary.

There

is

also another form of consecration cross.


after
floor

According to the
ashes
is

Roman

Pontificate,

the

Litany, a cross of sand and


traces with

sprinkled

upon the

upon which the bishop


.

his pastoral staff the

Greek and Latin Alphabets. men, great

iiA

Alphabetical cross in sand

thing," Martene observes, " which might appear puerile


unless
it

had been instituted

b}-

in

dignity, spiritual in
it.

life,

apostolical in discipline."
'

Durandus and Martene thus explain


pp. 47, 80, 171.

Gentleman's Mag., 1854,


Entr. Ecclesiologist. vol.
after

p. 56.
ii.,

'^

The

sign and signet of our

Lord was the

same before and

His coming. .See, among other examples, the crosses (consecration ?) in Redcliffe Church, Bristol, and on other Anglo-Norman structures similar to those found in the ruins of Yucatan. The builder's marks on Gloucester Cathedral are identical with those found
in

Carthage and Mexico.

Notes

and

Queries, 2d ser.,

xii., p.

425.

26o

History of the Cross

the alphabet is understood the rudiments of sacred doctrine, as S. Paul said, " Ye have need that one teach you again which be the first
principles of the oracles of

By

God."

(Heb.

v.

12.)

The Greek and

the

Latin are used to represent the (sometime) union

in faith of

both nations.

The Hebrew
yet the Cross

is
is

omitted because the Jews have rejected the truth.


to be described athwart the church
{i.

And
to

c, Saltirewise) begin-

ning at the

left

corner of the east, for knowledge

came from the Jews,

the right corner of the west, and then from the right of the east to the
left of

the west, for Christ passing from the east,


of their unbelief,

left

the Jews on his left

hand because
It is

and came to the Gentiles on the west.

written upon the pavement to remind us of the foundation of our

faith,

and

of

mean

materials, that

we may

recall that

even Abraham

acknowledged " Behold


Lord, which

am
in

now I ha\'c taken upon but dust and ashes " (Gen. x\'iii.
some reference

me

to speak unto the

27).'

There

is

also probably

to the Saviour's stooping

down

and writing
'

the dust.
The
alph.^bet

Durandiis, Neale, and Webb's. Trans., pp. 122, 239.


in the library at

was sometimes written


Anglo-.Saxnn

north and south, but, probably, more often as Durandus directs.

It is so in tlie

Ceremonial now
century.

Rouen, which Montfaucon ascribes

to the seventh or eighth

Arc/ij-ologia, vol. xxv., p. 235.

CHAPTER
SPIKE

XI

AND GABLE CROSSES


upon the summit
of a spire

THE

earliest cross placed

was probably

about A.D. 568.'

The

positions which are authorized as proper


accordinq- to the ^

for a spire, or pinnacle cross, ^ ^

Handbook

Date of

first

Use.

of English Ecclcsiologr, are the east end of the chancel, east end of the nave, porch, west end where there is no west tower,
gables,

bell

and transepts.

There are examples of


end
of the south

other positions, ex gr., the west


aisle; east*
aisle, east

and west ends


or west end

of the chantry; north

or both; the tower

when

the roof

is

gabled; on the central battlement and


a spire or turret.

on the top of

The
ate, to

varieties of spire crosses are innumerable,


cross, obviously inappropri-

from the simple Latin

the most floriated.

Some

of
Varieties.

the most beautiful are found in Spain.

Spire crosses were


in

made

of metal bars,

wrought

open work to

offer the least obstruction to the


effect.
Spire Crosses.

wind, and yet to produce a rich

The

cross

was placed upon a globe,


b_\-

for its

symbolic reason, and surmounted


to

tlie

ever turning weathercock,


of the
fall

remind Christians

of S. Peter,

and

of the watchfulness

with which they should ever face the Prince of the

Powers

of the Air. of

Spire Cross.

The cock should be made


hollow body, and with a
'

copper with a

From

Lee's Glossarv.

tail

projecting sufficiently to catch the slightest

Haydn's Dictioiuxry of Dates.


2fn

mi

m
^
^

Crosses on Gables.

From

Parker's Companion

to

Glossary of

Terms Used

in Gothic Architecture.

262

Spire and Gable Crosses


variation of the wind.
spire of

263

Good examples are found in the cock on the Rouen Cathedral, and that of Amiens, about the date of 1526.
j)rc)baijly

Except the cross erected by Colonel Fremont on one of the highest


peaks of the Rock}- Mountains,
the most elevated position to
is

which
of

this sacred svinbol has

been raised

uijon the tops i


i

,,... , Altitude of
,

some

of the

mountains of the Levant, which are crowned

some crosses.

by convents.
of S. Peter's,
are five

On

level

ground may be mentioned the cross on the dome

Rome,

or on the spires of Strasburg

and Cologne, which

hundred

feet in height.

In the Eastern Church, gable crosses are usually of metal, and differ
ver\- materially

from those of the Latin Church.


,

In Russia the arms are


in this
Eastern Crosses.

duplicatctl, like the pointers

country, indicatmg the four cardinal points of the compass,

...

under the weather vanes


,.
, .

and attached

to the m.iin rotl


is

by

gilt

chains.

Often the

Saltire, or S.
'

Andrew's

cross

used.

triple cross is ^

not

uncommon,

o Russian r u, Gable
crosses.

especially in

Moscow,
in

in reference to

the patriarchal dignity

in that city, also

the north of Russia and even in Finland.

In the

triple cross the

lower bar usualh- faces a different point of the compass

from that to which the two upper points are directed.'


significance of the spire cross with the crescent,

To

the peculiar
in

which occurs

this

country allusion has elsewhere been made.

The

cross

which crowns the spire


is

at

the intersection of

Rood-Spire

the transepts and nave,


'

called the rood-spire cross.


p. 221.

Neale, Hist. Eastern CJntrcli, Introduction,

CHAPTER

XII

STAXDARD CROSSES

CHRISTIANITY
Official
'

may

be said to have been publicly acknowledged


set

by the State when the Emperor Constantine


streets of
^'

up crosses

in the

Rome and
jj.^

Constantinople.

But before

his

time

ment o7
christ.anity.

stones had been set up as witnesses, like those by the Israeljj^g ^f q[j^
^.j^g

outcrmost bouuds of the


in

Roman

Empire.

Among

these

we

find

a rude stone pillar

Towyn, Merionethshire,
in

Great Britain, which bears the


third century;

name

of S.

Cadvan, who lived


its

the

and a cross

is

carved on each of

sides with an inscripits

tion in Latin, in

which occur some British characters that determine

date.

The

pillar

was the germ of the standard cross:

at first

it

was a rough

monolith bearing a small incised cross with an inscription commemorative


of the person or event.

But, as early as the

fifth

century, the pillar was


it

developed into a cross proper.

After the

Norman conquest

has been

supposed that they

fell

into disuse.
for various purposes.

Standard crosses weve erected

Generally the

larger are classified as Churchyard, Oratory, Sanctuary,


crosses,

and Memorial

but frequently one structure served

all

these purposes.

The

mortuar)-, or headstone, crosses will be treated of separately, and only a

general description will be given of the form and ornamentation of the

other crosses and a few of the more notable ones described.

Some

features are

common

to

all,

not only in Great Britain, but

throughout the Continent of Europe.

The

crosses face east and west.

Common charac-^^'hen the image of our blessed Lord is sculptured, intenstics. variably it is on the western face, so that the worshipper

may

turn to the East

in his

devotions.
264

If

a cross

is

turned

in

any other

Standard Crosses
direction
it

265
Often the crosses are

has been

mo\ed

since

its

erectior..

elevated upon a calvary of three steps, symbolical of the holy Trinity or

the Christian graces.


shape,

Frequently they are equi-brachial, or of the Greek


is

although at times being set upon a shaft the lower limb


is

elongated, and hence the appearance of a Latin cross


fact

given.

This

should be noted

in

regard to others which prove the early connec-

tion of the ancient British


lic

Church with the Eastern branch

of the

Catho-

Church.

The

ancient English, Welsh, and Cornish crosses appear to be of

three \arieties.

The

earliest,

probably, of
is

Roman

work, are monoliths

from seven to ten feet high upon which o L


before mentioned.
a cross,
is

cut a simple cross, r

c-

or across with a circle, and sometimes the inscription as

weuh

,, English and crosses


,

In Cornwall and Wales, the

monogram,
is

instead of

sometimes found.

The second

class of crosses

pure Sa.xon
bearing

work; they are also monoliths, sometimes fourteen

feet high,

the cross in alto-relief, or carved on the head of a simple shaft.


shaft
richly
is

The

entirely plain, without figures, but divided into


scroll,

compartments

wrought with ribbon,

and chequer work; the arms arc con-

nected with the wheel.


is

In the last class, or


is

Dano-Saxon, the

scroll

work

richly elaborated,

and the cross

no longer a single stone, but com-

posed of several.

Upon

the earlier crosses, but without the figure, the

wounds

of our

Lord

are represented

by

five bosses.

Crosses in Scotland are of two kinds.

Pillar crosses of

Danish or

Norwegian
first

origin,

and others which resemble the

Irish crosses.

The

are from eight to twenty-five feet in height, often with


Scotch Crosses.

a Latin cross incised

upon the whole western


pillar,

face,

and the

arms rarely project beyond the

while those of Ireland and else-

where are supported by an open


closed disk.

circle (usually called the

wheel) or a

The

panels are

filled

with ribbon, chain, net, and diaper


of sacred subjects,

work.

There are few representations

and no image

of our blessed Lord, but, instead, are carved battle scenes, ships, animals

both
'

in natural

and conventional shapes,


work

fishes,

etc'
and Scotland that
in the
I

The
"
is
;

interlacing "basket

exists nowiiere Init in Ireland

am aware

of," says Fergusson, " except in


cross

Armenia."

The " key" ornament

arm

of

theAberlemmo

Countries

found in the Sarnath Tope near Benares and elsewhere, but is common to both as is also the dragon ornament on the side of the cross, though this looks more like a

Scandinavian ornament than anything that can claim an origin further East."
Stone Momimefils, p. 270.

Fergusson,

/\ude

266

History of the Cross


almost impossible to decipher the curious sculptures upon these

It is

ancient stones.

Worn by

time and weather, they often present different

appearances

in the

sunshine or

when wet with

rain.

Frequently the

archsologist has to rely

more on the sense of touch,


tracing the

emblems with
than that of

the finger,
sight.

For example, on

the cross at
said to to

Aberlemmo,
a victory

have been erected

commemorate

over the Danes in the latter


part of the tenth century,'

some have discovered,


they supposed,
of

as

remains
which
interpret-

Hebrew

letters,

more fortunate
ers

have decided are the

representation of two angels.^

A like
upon one

puzzle

is

offered

of the crosses in

the churcliyard of Neigle.

Apparently
Cross of Neigle.

the figure

is

intended
elephant.

for

that

of

an

Upon

others in

the same locality, appear


a centaur bearing a cross
in

one paw, a bunch of

mistletoe in the other, and


Front of Stone
al

Alierk-mmo. with Cross.

a Capricornus, or sea goat.

From

Fergusson's

Rude Stone Monuments.

Upon

" a cross of S. Vig-

ean (a.D. 729) a grotesque hybrid, half bird, half


tic

fish, stalks

among

fantas-

animals and intertwining snakes which decorate the border."


find writhing snakes, crocodiles with
'

Again

we

heads
'^

at either

end

of their bodies,
vol. for 1840.

Fergusson,

Rude

Stone Monuments, p. 270.

Blackwood's Mag.,

Slaiulaid Crosses
fish, jiart

267

qiiadriipcd

and part serpent, and such

like.

Some have thought


tliesc

tliat

they discovered apes, and similar unclean beasts, perhaps

mon-

sters

were meant as representations of vices, or of


in

evil spirits like

the gar-

goyles and fantastic figures

Gothic architecture.

Conventional figures

of animals, such as elephants with their feet turned

up into

scrolls,

and

their trunks

thrown

in a straight line o\-er their Ijacks, are given,

while

horses,

and other animals with which the


it

artists

were familiar are repre-

sented correctly, hence

is

doubtful whether the portraiture proceeds

from ignorance or from a symljolic reason.'

Of

crosses in

honor of special persons, we

find instances in the Isle of

Man which

are identical in character with those of the .Scotch.


is

At Kiik
Crosses
.

Michael there

one bearing the inscription ^


i

in

Runic, " Mil'

in

..

the

brokli son of Athacau, the smith, raised this cross for his soul

isieofMan.

ami that
crosses in

of his faithful friend

Gant who made


at

this cross

and

all

[the

Man"|(?i

Another,

the same church, represents a stag

warrior.

hunt; on one edge, interlaced work, on the other the figure of an armed Inscription, " Eyolf tlie son of Thorolf the Red, raised this
[?'.

cross after

c,

in

memory
"

of] his foster

son."

At Kirk Andreas

is

the

fragment of a cross \\hich commemorates a crime.


in trust his

" Oskitel betrayed

sworn friend "

In the instances of the crosses of which illustrations are given, the


first is

token of conjugal affection having an inscription that " Sandulf


evidently of " Mai Luminscription on the second reads,
It is

the S\\arth\- erected this cross to his wife Arnbjorg. "

Scandinavian origin.
kuii

The

erected

this

cross to his

foster-father

Malmor, or Mai Muru."

These names show a Gaelic derivation."


Ireland presents crosses pre-eminent for grace and beauty.
'

The

island

Daniel Wilson, ArcIiirohi;y and Pieldstoric Annals of Scotland, pp. 501-505. The symbols on the Scandinavian crosses are easily understood by a reference to their mythology which
furnished the symbols for the
the beginning of time

descended
crafty

to

new religion after the Northmen became Christianized. Loki in was the mild, beneficent warmth united to Odin or the All Father, but he Midgard, the middlemost part of the earth, the dwelling-place of man, and became

and the cause of evil. One of his ofTspring by the giantess Angurboda, or boder of sorrow, was Jormundgand, or Midgard's serpent. Thor is the son of Odin and the Earth or Fjorgvin Loki had made for Thor his hammer Miolnir(the Fylfot cross) the crusher, with the vivifying. Here we which he was able to destroy all things and to strike off the head of Midgard's serpent. have the Persian theology modified by Northern feeling -the whole system of Christian theology, even to the Devil's supplying the Cross with which the old serpent is slain. Thorpe, A^orlhern

Mythology, vol.
''

p. 180.
])p.

'

Wilson, Archtcology and Prehistoric Annals of Scotland, Fergusson, Rude Stone Monuments, p. 272,

540-541.

268
abounds
witli

History of the Cross


every variety.

The
the

simple incised

pillar,
is

the plain Latin

cross, the circular-headed, the flat disk,


Crosses in
Ireland.

and what
cross.'

commonly, though

incorrectly,

called

wheel

The

highly sculp-

tured crosses were generally erected between the ninth and

twelfth centuries.

The shafts are sometimes of low elevation, but

mostly are from eight to twenty-five feet in height, from one foot to

two and a

half in width,

by one

third in thickness.

The

transverse bar

is

from three to six feet in length, the ends are squared, and, usually.

Crosses in Isle of

Man, Bearing Runic

Inscription.

From Fergusson's Rude Stone

Moininients.

carved, and the upper

arm

is

crowned with a coping stone.

This

last is

a feature peculiar to Irish crosses.

The

Crucifixion

is

placed on the

western

side,

our Lord being sometimes represented with Longinus and

Stephaton, or Calpurinus; and other typical and traditional characters

and subjects are often introduced.

The ornamentation
is

of scroll, ribbon,

diaper, net, chequer, and other work

of exquisite perfection.
in

Many
manu-

examples of similar ornamentation are found


scripts; ex. gr. the ribbon pattern
'

the ancient Irish

is

so elaborately

wrought
is

in

the gospel

Probably

this is

meant

fur the

nimbus, glory, or aureole, which


It

placed around the heads

of the

Divine Persons and saints

in Christian art.

originated, however, before Christianity,

and was used by the pagans as an emblem of power and divinity. In a fresco at Pompeii, representing Circe and Ulysses, the head of the former is surrounded by an aureole. Dyer, Pompeii,
p. 313.

In early Christian
the use of

art,

holy Trinity and

the Virgin
it

the whole figure of our Lord, as well as the other persons of the Mary, are enclosed within an aureole. Didron, Christ. Icon.
if
it

Hence
there
is

on a standard cross, especially


;

bore the image of the Saviour.


graceful

Besides,

a constructive reason
;

the arms of the crosses sometimes extended several feet, requiring

a support

the aureole, or wheel, aff(n'ded this,

and by

its

management, being sunk below

the surface of the main parts of the cross, added beauty, by softening the abrupt angles, as well
as strength

and symbolic meaning.

kB4,

^-y

The North

Cross, Clonmacnoise.

From
2G9

0"Sei\l's Crosses

0/ .-I jicifut

/n-/aii J.

270

History of the Cross


as the

known

Book 0/ Kf//s, that tradition ascribes the work


will
all

to angels."

But the various patterns


It is

be seen

in the engravings.

noteworthy that

ornamentation of standard crosses, whether


is

of simple or elaborate beauty,

apparently derived from that pattern

revealed to

Solomon

in

building his temple; cherubim, palm trees, open

flowers, bosses, net work,

chequer work, chain work, pomegranates,


iii.)

lily

work,

(i

Kings,

vi.

Chron.

From

Judea, whether accidentally

or providentially,
to Italy
in

we cannot
mosaics,

say, these

ornamentations were transported


Similar

and thence to the Western Churches.


Italian

work

is

found
villas

ancient

and

in

the remains of the


in

Roman

at

Woodchester and Woodstock, and

the

Temple
in

of Esculapius at

Lindsey Park, Monmouthshire, England, and


from the fourth to the eleventh century.'

the

Roman

basilicas

There

is

a tradition that

one of the crosses


gift of

at

Monasterboice, that at

Ardloc, and others were the


Cross at Monasterboice.

the Pope, which gives


origin.' o

some reason
are

to

suppose them of Italian ^


^

These crosses

carved out of stonc not found in the neighborhood, and the


to the other ecclesiastical

workmanship being superior

work

of the

same

period, seems to warrant such a conjecture.


crucifi.x

In Irish crosses

we

find the

with the body having outstretched arms, and the long tunic as

in early

Latin and Greek

art.

This would seem to bespeak antiquity, as

does also the representation of only those personages mentioned in the

Gospels as piercing the side and offering the sponge, and the comforting
angels.

Among

other scenes presented

in

the sculptures in the panels are the

Nativity, the offering of the Magi, the Circumcision, the Baptism, the
Scenes Represented on Crosses.

Slaughter of the Innocents, Jesus with the doctors J ti


'

in

the

Temple, the Overthrow of the money changers, the blessing


the entry into Jerusalem,

of the little children,

the

Mount, the Agony

in the Garden, the " Eca'

Homo

Sermon on the " and the attendant

soldiers with heads resembling those of birds of prey, Jesus surrounded

with dogs tearing him,

in reference to

the prophecy, "

Many

dogs are

come about
etc.
'

me"

the Crucifixion, and the instruments of the Passion,


face
:

These occupy the western


Within
tile

on the eastern
pp. 93, 94.

is

generally reprethis

past thirty years

an eminent

artist in
vi.,

Dublin declined tracing

work on

reverential grounds.

(Eng.) Ecchsiologist, vol.

Ubid.,
'

p. 95.
p. 99.

Ibid.

p^

fed jiC"^* *

The

Southeast Cross. Monasterboice.

From
271

O'Neill's Crosses

of Anact Ir.lanJ.

272
sented the

History of the Cross


Day
of

Judgment,

in

which our Lord often holds a double

cross emblematic of his twofold authority, instead of the simple cross of suffering.

The most frequent Old Testament


sacrifice of Isaac,

subjects are those of

Adam
lion,
etc.

and Eve, the Ark, the

Joseph sold to the Ish-

maelites,

David playing upon

his harp, or reselling the

lamb from the

Nebuchadnezzar feeding with the oxen, the erection of the Temple,

The
if

crucifixion of S. Peter

is

common, which

fact is easily ex-

plained,

we adopt the theory of the Ecc/csio/ogist of the Italian origin


most beautiful
crosses.
It is significant

of man}' of the

that the repreit is

sentation of the blessed Virgin and holy Child are not found,
lieved,

be-

on

many

crosses.

The examples

of standard crosses

have been taken mainly from Great

Britain, because there

and

in Ireland

some

of the

most

beautiful, cori'ect,

and easily visited specimens exist and also because the events memorialized are of special interest to us of the

younger world.
One, no lover

Examples might

be cited from other parts of Europe.

of liberty could pass

by unnoticed.

pillar

bearing four crosses, marks the place of martyr-

dom

of

Arnold von Winkelried.

At

the battle of Sempach, July

9,

1386, the Austrians presented a serried rank of spears, invincible to the

poorly armed Swiss.


ried rushed forward,

An

opening must be made.


all

Arnold von Winkel-

and swept

the pikes within his grasp into his

bosom, thus making a way


life.

for his

countrymen
that

at the sacrifice of his

own own

They

availed themselves of this offering to liberty and victory was

achieved.
Swiss.

Two

thousand Austrians
"

fell

day and but two hundred


shield,

Then

lost was banner, spear, and At Sempach in the flight

The cloister vaults at Konigsfield Hold many an Austrian Knight."

Love and
kerk
in

mammon
known

have conquered bigotry

in

the village of

Heems-

Holland.

The

celebrated Dutch painter Martin

Heemskerk,

Crossover Heemskerk.

also as

Van Veen, who


a

died

in

K74, J -r
i

asjed seventvs, j

six, for tlic

Sake of Icaving some memorial of himself, be-

queathed a sum
his village,

sufificient for

dowry annually
his grave.

to one

young woman

of

on condition that the bride and bridegroom should on the day

of marriage
I

go and dance on

"

Which,"

saith our author,

was assured was so religiously observed, that notwithstanding the

mk,

T-^^^

iw'^'-

Drumcliff Cross.

Fruai O'Xuill'b

J'liu-

Ai

Is

ej Aiuiait Iniiiui.

273

74
in religion

History of the Cross


which happened
in that

change
in

country caused

all

the crosses

cemeteries to be demolished, the inhabitants of

Heemskerk would not


like fate.
It is

permit that on the grave of this painter to suffer a


copper, and serves as a deed of settlement of. the

of

dowry or ordination

made to their daughters." The Reverend Dr. Cullen,


'

the

Roman

Catholic Archbishop of

Dub-

lin,

during the rage of the rinderpest


"^"^^"^^

in 1866,

urged upon

his flock the

Restoration of

restoration of the early pious uses of the cross.

"

To

all

in^xixth
Century.

Catholics

would recommend the use each day,


in
all

of the

praycrs against pestilence, which are found


in

prayer-

books, or those contained


to get their parks
ritual,

the missal.

would

also

recommend them

and

fields blessed ^\ith

prayers given in the

Roman
in

and also to erect crosses on their lands, and keep them

their

dwellings, in the hope that this


his

emblem

of the

triumph

of Christ over

enemies

may

put to flight the powers of darkness, and preserve us


Public and private prayers, holy water,
infidelity or heresy as things

from their wicked influence.

and the Cross are looked on by


despised,

to be

but every pious Catholic knows their virtue and efficacy.

Would
were
in

to

God

that

all

these means of obtaining assistance from

Heaven
and as
at cross
^

general use, and especially that the image and Cross of our Reas objects of veneration,
in

deemer were more commonly erected

memorials of the sufferings of our Lord,

market places, and

roads, according to the pious practice of our forefathers in the faith."


'

Entreticns sur
ii.,

les

Vies

el stir les

Ou7'rages dcs plus excellcnis peinlres, par

M.

Felibien,

torn,
''

p. 235,

A'eiv

Amsterdam, 1706. York Evening Post, March

24, 1S66.

CHAPTER

XIII

MEMORIAL CROSSES

THE

Cross

is

indeed a Catholic emblem.

It

may
It

sanctify the grave

of a slave, or the

tomb

of an

Emperor.

may

be a stone of
subjects of Me-

covenant between two private families, or a record of an


event decisive of the fate of empires.
so uni\'ersall\' appropriate.
taste, unles-s
It
is

No

other symbol

is

monai

crosses,

ne\'er out of place, never offensive to

maltreated by ignorance or pretension.


is

For instance,
in

in

Ely Cathedral, there

preserved the shaft of a cross,

memory

of S.

Owen, steward
da Dens

of

.S.

Ethelreda, A.D. 679, inscribed " Luccuin tuaui Oviiio

ft Ki-qiiiiini."

And

in

Llandivailog churchyard

is

a cross, bear-

ing a rude car\-ing of a warrior,

commemorative

of Broemail, Prince of
.\.I).

Powis,

who

defeated Ethelbred,

King

of

Northumberland,

617.

To

the archaeologist,

memorial crosses oftentimes are precious, as

giving examples, in their carvings, of garb or implements of the age in

which they were erected.


Kildare, Ireland, there
is

For example,
a

at

Okl Kilcullun,

in

County

memorial cross to the founder

of the church,

on which

is

sculptured a bishop with his attendant deacon, his crosier,

his leathern case for the Gospels, his

alms purse, and

bell.

Sometimes the
abl_\-

cross

is

a fragment of a cross, in Wales,


this

an expression of family love. A pillar, probis inscribed, " Concewn, great

grandson of Elisey, erected

column

to his great-grandfather Elisey."


offer-

Sometimes the sign


ing.

of our Lord has been erected as an expiatory

We

a cross near the church of S. Michael in the Isle of


of Ivalfir, son of Dinal, this stone

read the lines, perhaps inscribed by a heart-broken mother, on Man, " I'or the sins

was erected by

his

mother Aftride.
cross,

Baptisms, councils,
greater

etc.,

were often commemorated by a


tell

but a

number

of

memorial crosses extant


275

of stories incongruous

276

History of the Cross


The
residt of a

with the symbol of the Prince of Peace.

war was often


near
cele-

memoriahzed upon a
Whiteleaf Cross.

cross.

curious instance

may

be found

Whiteleaf,

Brockinghamshire,

England.
it is

Like the

brated White Horse


cliff.

in Berkshire,

cut on a liigh, chalky

The perpendicular is nearly The trench is from two seventy.


Horse,
its

hundred

feet,

and the transverse


supposed to be
of Alfred the

to three feet in depth, and like the


festival.
It
is

scouring

is

succeeded by a

commemorative

of a victory

by Edward the Elder, son

Great, about the year 905.

We

cannot note the tithe of these monuments interesting to the

reader, but those connected with events immortalized

by Shakespeare

cannot be passed by.


Cross Memorial-

We

hear the " All Hail!" of the


in
.

izedbyshaucspeare.

w'itclics in
^

"thuuder, lightning, and


,

rain,"

proach hweno
feet

stone near Torres.

It is a

we apmonohth about
as
,
i ,

twenty-five

high.

On

one side are represented warriors,


in

both

horse and footmen, engaged


the

a desperate conflict, as
their

is

indicated

by

number

of

the

fallen,

many with
its

heads dissevered from


as
if

their bodies.

Other carvings represent a procession


is

in invasion.

On

the reverse

inscribed, in

whole length, a cross elaborately

or-

namented.

According to

tradition, this cross

was erected

as a

memorial

of the treaty

between Svend Tveskjaeg and King Malcolm, and also

of the expulsion of the

Danes from the coasts


cross

of

Moray
in

'

(circa eleventh

century).

Another Shakespearian

may

be found

Stainmore.

frag-

ment only remains.


William,
stainmore Cross.

It

was erected to commemorate the treaty between


of England,
i

King
. ,

and the son


t^i
1
i i

of the " gracious


i

Duncan,

n r

Malcolm Lanmore.

he latter had refused to give


sisters of

up

to the English sovereign the

mother and

Edgar Atheling,

who had been

forced by stress of weather into the Frith of Forth.


as

Malcolm was probably influenced


laws of hospitality.

Atheling, for she was one of the fairest

much by the beauty of Margaret women of the time, as by the


is

On one

side of the cross

sculptured the English

king, on the other the Scotch, each facing his


called

own

country.'

It

was
it

Roi

crossc,

corrupted into Ree or Rere cross.

Scott refers to

in

his ballad of
'

AUan-a-Dalc :
p. 215.

Worsaae. Dant's and Xorwegians in Enj^iand,


Britton, Architectural Antiquities

'

of Great Britain,

vol.

i.,

p. 92.

Memorial Crosses
"

277
\'ail,

And

tliu

best of our nobles his bonnet will

Who
Another

at

Rere

cross, in Stainmorc,

meets AUan-a-Dale."
it, is

cross, revered

because our Shakespeare has consecrated


It

that of Kihisea, on the coast of Ilolderness, Yorkshire.


orates the iandiui^ of

commemKilnsea Cross.

Henry Bolingbroke, afterwards Henry


i

IV., at Ravcnsi)urt;h in

yj<j.

On

the west side are repre;

sented the blessed Viri;in and S. John

alxn'e

is

a fit^ure being'
figures

crowned

by a female.

On

the east side are the

same

and two busts,

nearly obliterated, and two dogs.

As

in

Irish crosses, these are

com-

mon, apparently
about
Israel.

referring to a state of tribulation.


i6),

"

Many dogs came


royal Psalmist of
sea, this

me"

(Vs. xxii.

propheticalK"
of the

mourned the
of

In i8iS, in

consequence

encroachments of the

interesting relic was

removed to the park

Marmaduke

Constable,

Esq., in Holderness.'

Near Lindores, on the


cross dedicated
to
S.

boundar_\'

between Fife and Stratham,


it

is

Magider, but

is

better

known

as

Macduff's

Cross.

After the death of Macbeth, King Malcolm granted


Macduff's Cross.

to

the Thane

of Fife three requests

first,

that he and his

successors might place the crown on the King's head at his coronation,

second, that they might lead the van

in

battle,

and

last,

that

if

any

of

the kinsmen of Macduff, within the ninth degree, should

commit

acci-

dental homicide, he should have the privilege of sanctuary at this cross,

and

total remission of the

crime on the payment of a penalty; which,

according to some accounts, was that of nine cows and a heifer.


cross

This

was demolished

b\-

the fanatic followers of Knox.


saitl

Its pedestal

onlv remains, around which are tumuli,

to be the graves of those


;

who

sought sanctuary but failed to prove the required relationship


believed
still

their
for

spirits are

to haunt the spot, praying for that

mercy

their souls

which was

denied their bodies."


is

The bloody
cross.

story of Croyland
it

memorialized by the remains of

its

In brief,
of

reads as follows.

During the invasion of the Danes,


cross at croy'""''

the

Abbey

Croyland received notice of their approach.


in a

The younger of the monks were hastily concealed boring wood with the charters, relics, and jewels.
'

neigh-

The Abbot Theodore,

CentU-man's Mng., May, 1821.


h.<is

Within the past


sea.

rival of Hull,

been devoured by the

.Shoals e.tist

'Scott, Minstrelsy of the


Cross."

Scottish

Border,

hundred years, Ravenspurgh, once the where once was a harbor. "Lord Soules," note B, and "Macduff's
five

278
in

History of the Cross


of the

company with the more aged


some
of

monks and the

children, awaited

the coming of the enemy, hoping that the venerable appearance of the
brethren,

whom

were over a hundred years

old,

and the youth

of the children, might be safeguards.

In the solitude of the place, the


of

Danes might have passed the abbey unnoticed, but the distant chant
the matins betrayed
forced the gates,
it.

Just as Theodore had communicated, the Danes


chiefs,

and Asketiel, one of the

smote

off

the Abbot's

head

at the steps of the altar.

All were slain, save the children and the


for torture in

more aged monks, who were reserved


But

hopes that their

weakness would induce them to disclose the hiding-place of the treasures.


their heroic constancy disappointed the

enemy.

Only one victim


was stabbed to
jarl,

was spared.

Turgar, a boy of ten years, would not be separated from

his tutor, the sub-prior Lethioins, but

when the

latter

death the child prayed to share his

fate.

Sidroc. a Danish

struck

with the beauty of the boy, tore his cowl from his head, threw his cloak

over him, and saved him.

For three days the Danes ransacked


the tombs, knowing that
chalices,
in

S.

Guthlake, sparing not even


crosiers,
fire,

them were often buried \aluable

and

rings.

On

the fourth day, after setting the abbey on

they proceeded to Medeshamstide, since called Peterborough.

Here the
abbey

tragedy was re-enacted; but the Danes found richer


not only contained
its

spoil, as that

own

treasures, but those of the neighborhood,


its

which had been brought within

walls for safe-keeping.

The

pillage

and massacre lasted


slew the

fifteen days,

during which Hubba, a Danish king,


to revenge a

Abbot and eighty-three monks with his own hand, wound inflicted upon his brother. Sidroc, anxious to save Turgar, allowed him to escape.

He
tlie

fled

by

night to the ruins of Croyland, where he found the residue of

monks

who had

returned.

Godric was chosen by them to

fill

the place of

Theodore, and under his direction the half-consumed bodies of their


slaughtered brethren were dragged
Christian
rites.

from the

ruins,

and buried with

Scarcely had this sad office been completed,


office for the corpses of

when they
Godric

performed the same holy


raised a

Medeshamstide.

pyramid

of stones

on which was engraved the history, and oppo-

site to this

he erected a cross bearing an image of our Lord, not only to

rescue the spot from profanation, but also to induce the passers-by to
offer a prayer for the repose of the martyrs.

During

his life

he visited

Memorial Crosses

279
in

the spot on each anniversary of the massacre, and spent two daj's

celebrating masses, and performing; the other de\'otions to whicli Catiiolic

cliarity

has attributed

the power of benefiting the souls of the

departed.'

A
same

few years

ai;o
is

an interesting; cross was disco\-ercd at Kirkbradden,


a w heel cross

Isle of

Man.

It

about four feet

hiijh,

and nearly the

in

width.

In the four compartments of the cross are animals,

three of which resemble cats, and the last a mouse.

Chainwork

sur-

rounds the

circle.

The
Isis,

figures

have a reference to the Isiac mysteries.

According to

Piin\-

figure of a cat."

symbolized bv the ^ ' In the head of the cross are two cats " reor the
is

moon,

Cross at Kirkbradden, isie


of

gardant,

'

with a

human
is

Man.

face

between them.

Plutarch in-

forms us that by this

designated the changes of the moon, regulated


In the
in
first

by wisdom and understanding.'


lean, in the second

compartment the animal

is

more plump,

the third not less so.

According to

Demetrius Phalereus, the cat hassympath}' with the moon, increasing and
decreasing
the
in size as

that luminary waxes or wanes; hence the fable that


cat."

moon

has brought forth a

In the fourth
e.xercise a

compartment

is

shrew-mouse, which was supposed to


mals.

malign influence on aniin

This had twenty-eight teeth, equal to the number of days

revolution of the

moon

other of the rat species had si.xteen.


Isis,

Reasoning
Noah's Ark,
or shrew-

from the mythologic fables of Osiris and


the cat
is

he proceeds to show that


of

the symbol of

Isis,
is

or the

moon, and a type

especially

when the moon


also Isis

increasing in size.

The mygale,
is

mouse,

is

and the ark when the moon

decreasing.

The

ark

was
it

also represented

under the figure of a ship called Baris by Egyptians; hence a symbol of the moon, which, by the
all

was a kind

of crescent,

Egyptians, was considered as the mother of

things.

This nation also

used the

the Isle of

moon and ark as synonymous terms. As the inhabitants of Man came from the East, they are supposed to have brought
rites.''

the Isiac mysteries with them, along with other religious

The most
'

celebrated memorial crosses are those reared, at the instance


xi.

Lingard, Antiquities of the Anglo-Saxon Church, chap.


Pliny,

'^

Natural

Nisi., lib. xvi.,


Osiris, c. 64.

c.

29.

^ *

Plutarch, Isis

and

Demetrius Phalereus,
at

De

Elocution, g 159.

'Condensed from an
found

article

Kirkbradden,

Isle of

by Geo. Dobbs, D.D.. on the symbolism of an ancient stone Man, in the Gentleman's Mag., November, 1S66.

Geddington Cross.

From

Britton's Architectural Antitptiiids.

2S0

Memorial Crosses
of royal affection,

281

by Edward
liis

I.

of

England,

at the resting-places for a

night of the corpse of

tjueen,

Eleanor, during her removal from


Queen Eleanor
Crosses,

Hardeby,

in

Nottinghamshire, to Westminster, from the


Originally, they were

4th to the 17th of December, 1290.'


fifteen
in

number,''

but

only

three

remain;

those

at

Geddington,

Nortlianipton, and Walthani.


Cavallini,^

\'crtue and W'alpole suppose that I'ietro

an Italian architect, was the builder,


this statement,' yet
it

but

Pilkington

and

Bromley contest
lini

is

thought that the son of Caval-

built the

one

at

Stamford.
is

The

cross at

Geddington, Nortlianipton,

of triangular shape, elefirst


is

vated on eight steps, and of three stages.

The

solid-covered
cross of Geddington.

diaper sculpture of six panels, bearing shields charged with

the arms of England, Castile, Leon, and Ponthieu


rises

above

the canopied tabernacle containing the statue of the Queen.

The
shields

cross of
in

Northampton

is

the most perfect of the three.

It

is

octagonal

shape, surmounted on eight steps, and of three stages.

Two

are attached to each panel,

charged with the arms of England and

Ponthieu singly, and of Castile and Leon quarterly.


also affixed to four sides.

carved book

is

On

the western face has been inserted the

arms

of Great Britain in a garter,

under a crown, beneath which


aiiioris
iiiciiioriaui

is

this

inscription:

" / pcrpctiiam

coiijiiffn/is

hoc ElcauorcB

KcgiitiB inonuiiicntiuii vctiistatc

pcnc coUapsiim, rcstaurari

voliiit Iioiiorabilis
illo

jiisticiarioruni ccetus cotnitaius NortJiaiiiptonia;

M.DCC.XIII. Anno

fclicissimo, in quo

Anna, Grande Britannice

sjicz

dccus, potcntissiina oplibcratain,

prcssontiii
'

viiidcx pascis

Bc/Hqnc arbitra, post Gcniianiani

memorials as these are unparalleled in any other kingdom. The nearest approach was the work of Philip III. of France when he brought home the remains of those of his wife, Isabella of Aragon, who his father, I.ouis IX., who died at Tunis a.d. 1270

Gough

states that such

Count of Nevers. The King honor of them, and also erected monumental towers at certain distances on the road from Paris to S. Denis, containing statues of life size of Lewis the Count of These towers, which were forty feet Nevers, of Robert the Count of Clermont, and of himself. in height, were erected between the years 1270 and 12S6, and were destroyed in the Revolution
died at Cozenza in the same year
;

and those of

his brother, the

made

a magnificent funeral in

at the close of the eighteenth century.

Bloxam, Monumental Architecture,

p.

143

Rimmer,

Ancient Stone Crosses of England,


*

p. 44.

number to twelve. But in the Archieolo^ia, vol. xxix,, p. 172, enumerated: Lincoln, Grantham, Stamford, Geddington, Northampton, StonyStratford, Woburn, Dunstable, St. Albans, Waltham, West Cheap, Charing, Hardley, Newark,
antiquarians limit the
etc., fifteen are

Some

Leicester.
'

Rimmer omits the last three. The same who carried the crucifix in "
S. Bridget.

S. Paul's
iii.,

Beyond
viii.

the Walls " at

Rome, famous

for

having spoken to
*

See infra, part


i.,

chap.

Britton, Architect. Anliq., vol.

p. S3.

/'

'v-

^^'V%h:

f^ft^'-'

The Queen's

Cross, near Northampton.

From

Britton's

A ir/iiU-ctura/ A ii/i,/ui/ies.

282

Memorial Crosses
Bclgidiii prccsuUis
iiiiiiiitaui,

28:

Gallos plus

vice

dcciina profligatos,

suis

socioriiinqiic ariitis I'iiuciu/i inodinn statuit, ct Eiiropce in libcrtatcin vin-

dicatcB

Pacem

rcstituit."

On

another tablet

is

the followi'ng inscription


2"^'

"

Riirsiis cinoidat, ct rcstaurat.

Gcorgii III. regis

Domini

IJ62.

N.

BayHs."'
fordshire,

The cross at Walthani,


is

Hertthan

more

dihipidalcci
its

either of the others, but


far richer,

details are

and show

it

to be the

wreck
shape

of a

more elaborate and magnificent


Its

structure than the others.

was hexagonal.
But the most celebrated, owing to
the

memory

of

the historical events

which cluster about them, of the Eleanor crosses were those of Cheapside

and Charing.
west of

The former stood

little
ver_\-

Bow Church and

resembled

closely the cross of

Northampton.

It

was considered the most beautiful


England.

in

Worthy

old

Peter

Heylin

gives an interesting account of this cross

which
fore,

is

too long to be inserted

thereIt

with regret,

we condense.

was
Waltham
Cross.

originally erected in 1290,

and repaired at

the expense of divers worthy citizens in the times of

Henry VI. and Henry

\TI., 1441 and i486, and was regilded in 1522 " for the entertainment of

the

Emperor Charles the


'

Fifth;

new burnished

against the coronation of


, ,i.oh Cheapside and

Q.
of

Anne BuUen, Anno

1533; as afterwards at the coronation joj^

_.

King Edward Reception of King

the Sixth, and, finally, at the Magnificent charmg


Philip, 1554.

crosses.

And
;

ha\-ing for so long time continued

an undefaced

Monument

of Christian Piety,

was quarrelled with by the


of the zeal of the
all

Puritans of the present Reign

who being emulous

French Calvinians

whom
;

they found to have demolished

crosses
in

wheresoever they came


several

they caused this Cross to be presented


in

Ward

motes, for standing

the

High-way

to hindering

of

Carts and other carriages; but finding no


'

remedy
i.,

in that course, they

Britton, Architectural Antiquitii-s, vol.

p. 84.

Waltham

Cross.

From

'Bntioa's Aic/iildcltoal Aiiliijuitics.

2S4

Memorial Crosses
resolved to apply themselves to another.
first

285

In pursuance whereof they


1581, violently breaking

set

upon

it

in