Signatis... vultus tui : (Re) impressing the Holy Face before and after the European Cult of the Veronica

Variant title
Signatis... vultus tui : (znovu)obtiskování svaté tváře před evropským kultem Veraikonu a po něm
Author: Kumler, Aden
Source document: Convivium. 2017, vol. 4, iss. Supplementum, pp. [102]-113
  • ISSN
    2336-3452 (print)
    2336-808X (online)
Type: Article
License: Not specified license
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From the outset, the Veronica was framed as an impressed image of the Holy Face, a treatment that contributed to the Roman relic's auratic status as a cult object and encouraged, if not demanded, its replication and dissemination in the form of images and objects. This essay explores how the Veronica was itself authorized by and functioned in a long, far-reaching medieval tradition of (re)impressing Christ's face in the lowrelief forms of coins, seals, communion wafers, and méreaux (tokens). Materially instantiating the trope of the sacred impression, such objects reveal how people in the Middle Ages actively participated in the project of re-impressing the Holy Face, thus establishing a material and conceptual tradition conducive to the thirteenth-century explosion of the Veronica's cult and its enduring vitality into the early modern period.
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