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Art And Identity In An Amulet Roll From Fourteenth-Century Trebizond

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Chapter Summary

This chapter examines the survival type of art: amulet roll, now divided between libraries in New York and Chicago, which now measures approximately 5m in width and 8-9 cm in width, which has Greek texts on the obverse and Arabic on the reverse, and a series of very fine illustrations on Greek side. Analysis of the roll reveals that it originated in Trebizond in second half of the fourteenth century, and the roll is therefore considered within the cultural and political context of that small but active Greek kingdom. The chapter pays particular attention to text and representation of a rare figure, Evgenios of Trebizond, who is included among a series of saints and prophets in order to enact that saint's protection of the patron of the roll. The roll generated identity through its Greek Christian texts and images, and made clear the special role God had chosen for Trebizond.

Keywords: amulet roll; Arabic; art; Christian texts; Evgenios; God; Greek texts; identity; patron; Trebizond



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