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Perception of The Soul in Byzantine Art and Views On The Separation of The Soul From The Body

Abstract The theological explanations, texts, the statements of the clergymen, the related information given in the holy books on death, and the separation of the soul from the body were also investigated by scientists in the past. However, no detailed studies were conducted before on the symbolic appearance of the soul when the soul leaves the body, the moment it leaves the body, the symbolic figures that help the soul, and the iconography of the soul. The subject, which appeared in visual terms in the Middle Byzantine Period, and with illustrations in the manuscripts and especially in wall paintings with various developments between the 11th and 12th centuries, was later evaluated as the reflection of the developing imagination on art with the effect of the decreasing theology. The physical appearance and leaving the body of the soul were examined in symbolical and iconographical terms, and the samples dated between the 11th and 12th Centuries were evaluated comparatively by considering the views of theologians and clergymen aside from the Old Testament and the New Testament, which provided information in this field.

Keywords: Byzantium, Jesus, Angel, Mary, Soul.


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