Tuesday, January 7, 2014

cephalophore


A cephalophore (from the Greek for "head-carrier") is a saint who is generally depicted carrying his or her own head; in art, this was usually meant to signify that the subject in question had been martyred by beheading. Handling the halo in this circumstance offers a unique challenge for the artist. Some put the halo where the head used to be; others have the saint carrying the halo along with the head.

The term "cephalophore" was first used in a French article by Marcel Hébert, "Les martyrs céphalophores Euchaire, Elophe et Libaire", in Revue de l'Université de Bruxelles, v. 19 (1914).

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