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Heavenly Bodies

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"Heavenly Bodies: Cult Treasures & Spectacular Saints from the Catacombs" unveils the mesmerizing world of catacomb saints, fully articulated skeletons of early Christian martyrs discovered in Rome in 1578.

Paul Koudounaris takes readers on a captivating journey through these relics, showcasing specially photographed examples like a female saint adorned in silk brocade, gold lace, and precious gems.

The skeletons, sent to German-speaking Europe to replace destroyed relics post-Reformation, were meticulously reassembled and dressed in elaborate costumes, wigs, crowns, jewels, and armor. Serving as reminders of heavenly treasures, they were displayed in churches.

Koudounaris, granted unique access to religious institutions, unveils these hidden historical artifacts, some making their debut in this publication after being concealed for over a century. "Heavenly Bodies" is a visually stunning exploration of a fascinating intersection of art, religion, and history.


  • 0.9" H x 9.5" L x 6.9" W (1.85 lbs) 192 pages
  • Released 10/08/2013
  • Hardcover
  • ISBN: 9780500251959

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