How Did Catholic Church Influence Byzantine Art

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The influences of Byzantine art and literature on the Catholic Church and the influence of the Church on these forms are wide spread and deep. This influence grew when the seat of the Byzantine Empire was located in Italy. The use of icons and aesthetic representations as opposed to realism by Byzantine artists fit well with the Catholic Church’s use of icons to inspire religious belief. Byzantine literature was used because it was thought to add to classical literature because of the rhythmic prose also used in Jewish psalms. Throughout the world, especially in Italy and the Middle East, the influence of the all but nameless Byzantine artists can be seen in almost all Catholic Churches. The concept of Byzantine art in Italy, especially in the South and in Sicily, is so strong that there appears to be of fear at times of designating some piece of art as Byzantine when in fact that might be a technical error. According to Safrari the dating classification of frescoes found in churches in the ‘heel’ of the Italian boot (Safrari 501). Successive layers of frescoes were found in…show more content…
This is a debatable point among scholars. The bishops of the Catholic Church in Constantinople debated the question of autonomy with other Byzantine patriarchs (Archimandrite 6). Some claimed two different centers of Christianity were autonomous from the Pope in Rome. Others obviously argued that the Pope was the sole leader of all Christian churches. In the end, the Pope in Rome and what is now known as the Greek Orthodox Church each excommunicated the other (Archimandrite 6). This is what is known as the Great Schism of 1054. So it is that the center of the Byzantine Empire was also the center of the split of the Catholic Church. The churches’ connected political history with Constantinople is another reason that the influence of Byzantine art and culture is so strong in the Catholic

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