Domes of Heaven: The Domed Basilicas of Cyprus
ProQuest, 2008 - 489 pages
The Church of Cyprus became an independent exarchy in the fifth century. This cultural autonomy provided Cypriots with a sense of pride and freedom that was not shared by other Byzantine provinces. Since the late fourth century, the Church built many wooden roofed basilicas on the island. Then in 649 AD Arabs invaded and destroyed many of its Early Christian buildings. From that time until 965, the Byzantine Empire and the Arab Caliphate of Damascus divided tribute from the population. During these centuries five churches were rebuilt, but with a radically different design than the previous structures---they were vaulted with a series of multiple domes. This dissertation is a comprehensive study of these monuments with three objectives: (1) to provide a complete architectural analysis; (2) to place these monuments in their cultural and historical context by assessing primary and secondary literature, and archaeological reports; and (3) to explain the symbolic importance that this new design conveyed. It proposes that the three-domed basilica was peculiar to Cyprus. The architecture was a manifestation of the Cypriots' unique political situation and their ideological concerns. By adopting three domes along the nave, church officials combined the Dome of Heaven motif with mystification of the liturgy promoted by Maximus the Confessor.
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Summary and Final Remarks
Figures for Chapter 2
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Agia Paraskevi Agia Sophia Agia Varvara Agioi Agios Epifanios Agios Georgios Agios Lazaros Agios Varnavas almond rosettes Apostles apse Arab Arab raids arcades archaeological archbishop argued ashlars Asomatos autocephaly Barnabas barrel-vaulted barrel-vaulted basilicas barrel-vaulted churches bema bishop building built Byzantine architecture Byzantine Empire C.A. Stewart cathedral Christ Church of Cyprus Constantine Constantinople Constantinopolitan construction cross cross-in-square Cypriot churches decoration Dikigoropoulos domed basilicas earlier Early Christian church eastern eighth century Emperor Enlart Epiphanius evidence example excavated floor fresco Geroskipou Greek ground plan Holy inscription island Justinian Kition Larnaka later marble masonry Maximus Megaw monastery monuments mosaic multiple-domed basilicas multiple-domed church narthex nave ninth opus sectile original Panagia Papageorghiou Paphos Patriarch Period of Neutrality Peristerona Phase Photo piers relics Roman Salamis Salamis-Constantia scholars seventh century side-aisle sixth century Soteriou structure synthronon tenth century three domes tomb transept arms Varnavas and Hilarion vaulting wall wooden-roof wrote