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Encyclopedia > Labarum
Christianity Portal
The Labarum
The Labarum
An image of the labarum, with the Greek letters Alpha and Omega inscribed.
An image of the labarum, with the Greek letters Alpha and Omega inscribed.
Labarum with Jesus Prayer in Romanian: Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, the sinner. The image appears on Romanian Philokalia book cover.

The labarum was a military standard which displayed the first two Greek letters of the word Christ ( Greek: ΧΡΙΣΤΟΣ or Χριστός )—Chi (χ) and Rho, (ρ).[1] It was first used by the Roman emperor Constantine I (Greek: Μέγας Κωνσταντίνος ). Roman Catholic image of Jesus Christ as the Sacred Heart - no copyright This image has been released into the public domain by the copyright holder, its copyright has expired, or it is ineligible for copyright. ... Image File history File links Simple_Labarum2. ... Image File history File links Simple_Labarum2. ... Image File history File links Image of the labarum from Nordisk Familjebok, public domain. ... Image File history File links Image of the labarum from Nordisk Familjebok, public domain. ... Alpha (uppercase Α, lowercase α) is the first letter of the Greek alphabet. ... Look up Ω, ω in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ... Image File history File links Christogram_with_Jesus_Prayer_in_Romanian. ... Image File history File links Christogram_with_Jesus_Prayer_in_Romanian. ... Christogram with Jesus Prayer in Romanian: Doamne Iisuse Hristoase, Fiul lui Dumnezeu, miluieÅŸte-mă pe mine păcătosul. ... The Philokalia (Gk. ... The Greek alphabet is an alphabet that has been used to write the Greek language since about the 9th century BCE. It was the first alphabet in the narrow sense, that is, a writing system using a separate symbol for each vowel and consonant alike. ... This page is about the title, office or what is known in Christian theology as the Divine Person. ... For other uses, see Chi. ... 1. ... This is a list of Roman Emperors with the dates they controlled the Roman Empire. ... Head of Constantines colossal statue at Musei Capitolini Gaius Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus[1] (February 27, 272–May 22, 337), commonly known as Constantine I, Constantine the Great, or (among Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Catholic[2] Christians) Saint Constantine, was a Roman Emperor, proclaimed Augustus by his troops on...


The etymology of the word before Constantine's usage of it is unclear.[2]

Contents

The Christian origin account

Mythology characteristically differs in the details, but in every case, the details are meaningful, and never random. According to Lactantius,[3] a historian of North African origin saved from poverty and under the patronage of Constantine Ι as tutor to his son Crispus, who was writing in Latin, Constantine had dreamt of this emblem and a voice saying "In hoc signo vinces" ("In this sign you shall conquer"). On waking he ordered his soldiers to put the emblem on their shields; that very day they fought the forces of Maxentius and won the Battle of the Milvian Bridge (312), outside Rome. Lucius Caelius (or Caecilius?) Firmianus Lactantius was an early Christian author who wrote in Latin (c. ... Crispus on a coin issued to celebrate Constantine I victory over Goths in 323. ... Detail from The Vision of the Cross by assistants of Raphael, depicting the vision of the cross and the Greek writing εν τούτω νίκα in the sky, before the Battle of the Milvian Bridge. ... Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius ( 278-28 October 312) was Western Roman Emperor from 306 to 312. ... Combatants Constantinian forces Maxentian forces Commanders Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius† Strength ~50000 men ~75000-120000 men Casualties Unknown Unknown The Battle of Milvian Bridge took place on October 28, 312 between the Roman Emperors Constantine the Great and Maxentius. ...


Writing in Greek, Eusebius of Caesarea (Greek: Ευσέβιος της Καισαρείας ), the bishop who wrote the first surviving general history of the early Christian churches (died in 339), gave the two definitive versions of Constantine's famous vision, accepted by the Orthodox Churches, by which Constantine I was later canonized for his contributions to Christianity as a saint, together with his mother St. Helena ( Greek: Αγία Ελένη ) who introduced him to the Christian religion and was a strong influence throughout his life: Eusebius of Caesarea Eusebius of Caesarea (c. ...

  • According to Eusebius' Historia ecclesiae ("Church History"), the emperor saw the vision in Gaul on his way to Rome, long before the battle with Maxentius: the phrase as he gives it was "Εν Τούτω, Νίκα!"—literally, "In this, be victorious!".
  • In a later hagiographic memoir of the emperor that Eusebius wrote after Constantine's death ("On the Life of Constantine," ca 337‑339), the miraculous appearance came when the rival armies met at the Milvian Bridge. In this later version, the emperor had been pondering the logical question of misfortunes that befall armies that invoke the help of many different gods, and decided to seek divine aid in the forthcoming battle from the One God. At noon Constantine saw a cross of light imposed over the sun. Attached to it, in Greek characters, was the saying "Εν Τούτω, Νίκα!". Not only Constantine, but the whole army saw the miracle. That night Christ appeared to the emperor in a dream and told him to make a replica of the sign he had seen in the sky, which would be a sure defense in battle. Thus the element of the public miracle is logically reinforced by the account of a private dream of an explanatory nature.

Constantine's modern biographer, the Western-European historian Ramsey MacMullen, doubtfully comments:[4] "If the sky writing was witnessed by 40,000 men, the true miracle lies in their unbroken silence about it", disputing Eusebius' account, although there numerous theories on the astrological phenomena of that day that would surely have drawn the attention of the astrologers and diviners attached to all Roman armies and could have led them seeing crosses and loops on the sky (see [1]) with the most impressive being that of F. Heiland, of the Zeiss planetarium at Jena, who in late 40’s and 50’s, published in that institution’s journal entitled “Die astronomische Deutung der Vision Kaiser Konstantins” (The Astronomical Interpretation of the Vision of The Emperor Constantine), his observation that the fall of the year 312 AD was attended by an unusual spectacle: the syzygy or close alignment of three bright planets in the evening sky above the southwest horizon and in particular Mars, Saturn and Jupiter which were positioned along a line within about 20 degrees of each other on the border of Capricornus and Sagittarius. Heiland suggests that Constantine overcame the psychological impact on his army, of the ill pagan content of the astrological omen that associated syzygies with bad outcomes, by appropriating it to fashion a Christian token of victory in the form of the labarum. Look up Syzygy in Wiktionary, the free dictionary. ...


The Swedish geologist Jens Ormo et al also suggests that the latter account may have had its origins in Constantine witnessing the day-light effects of a meteorite's descent through earth's atmosphere, of which the impact he believes resulted in the Sirente crater situated in Sirente-Velino Regional Park, Abruzzo, Italy [2] Willamette Meteorite A meteorite is a natural object originating in outer space that survives an impact with the Earths surface without being destroyed. ... Image:Crater. ... “Abruzzi” redirects here. ...


Eusebius may have felt that the dream mytheme on its own needed reinforcement supporting his emperor's account and trying to influence the hearts and minds of the people towards the change of the religion of the empire to Christian, presenting it as a true miracle. Of this, he wrote in the Vita that Constantine himself had told him this story "and confirmed it with oaths," late in life "when I was deemed worthy of his acquaintance and company." "Indeed," says Eusebius, "had anyone else told this story, it would not have been easy to accept it." In the study of mythology, a mytheme is an irreducible nugget of myth, an unchanging element, similar to a cultural meme, one that is always found shared with other, related mythemes and reassembled in various ways—bundled was Claude Lévi-Strausss image— or linked in more complicated relationships...

Right-angle labarum, retaining the horizon: Romanesque carving at Santa Maria de Cóll, Vall de Boí, Spain
Right-angle labarum, retaining the horizon: Romanesque carving at Santa Maria de Cóll, Vall de Boí, Spain

Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 764 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1936 × 1520 pixel, file size: 995 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 764 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1936 × 1520 pixel, file size: 995 KB, MIME type: image/jpeg) File historyClick on a date/time to view the file as it appeared at that time. ... Romanesque St. ... Fresco of Christ Pantocrator from Sant Climent de Taüll, acknowledged as one of the masterpieces of Romanesque art. ...

The celestial Chi

Though modern representations of the chi-rho sign represent the two lines crossing at ninety degree angles, the early signs of the labarum cross at an angle that is more vividly respresentativbe of the chi formed by the solar ecliptic path and the celestial equator. This image is most familiar in Plato's Timaeus,[5] where it is explained that the two bands which form the world soul (anima mundi) cross each other like the letter chi. Not only did the two legs of the chi remind early Christians of the Cross, "it reminded them of the mystery of the pre-existent Christ, the Logos Theou, the Word of God, who extended himself through all thing in order to establish peace and harmony in the universe," in Robert Grigg's words.[6] Hugo Rahner summarized the significance: The plane of the ecliptic is well seen in this picture from the 1994 lunar prospecting Clementine spacecraft. ... The celestial equator is a great circle on the imaginary celestial sphere, which could be constructed by inflating the Earths equator until it intersects with said sphere. ... PLATO was one of the first generalized Computer assisted instruction systems, originally built by the University of Illinois (U of I) and later taken over by Control Data Corporation (CDC), who provided the machines it ran on. ... Timaeus (Honour) (or Timæus) is a name that appears in several ancient (Greek) sources: Timaeus (dialogue), a Socratic dialogue by Plato Timaeus of Locri, the 5th-century Pythagorean philosopher, appearing in Platos s Timaeus. ... Beginning with Vedantic Hindu philosophy, the Ātman — Sanskrit (masculine nominative singular: Ātmā) is regarded as an underlying metaphysical self. ... Anima mundi is the soul of the world, a pure ethereal spirit, which was proclaimed by some ancient philosophers to be diffused throughout all nature. ...

"The two great circles of the heavens, the equator and the ecliptic, which, by intersecting each other form a sort of recumbent chi and about which the whole dome of the starry heavens swings in a wondrous rhythm, become for the Christian eye a heavenly cross.[7] Of Plato's image in Timaeus, Justin Martyr, the Christian apologist writing in the second century, found a prefiguration of the Cross,[8] and an early testimony may be the phrase in Didache, "sign of extension in heaven" (sēmeion ekpetaseōsen ouranō).[9]

For the Brisbane bus routes known collectively as the Great Circle Line (598 & 599), see the following list of Brisbane Transport routes A great circle on a sphere A great circle is a circle on the surface of a sphere that has the same diameter as the sphere, dividing the... Justin Martyr (also Justin the Martyr, Justin of Caesarea, Justin the Philosopher) (100–165) was an early Christian apologist and saint. ... The Didache (, Koine Greek for Teaching[1]) is the common name of a brief early Christian treatise ( 70–160), containing instructions for Christian communities. ...

Iconographic career

Among the many soldiers depicted on the Arch of Constantine, which was erected just three years after the battle, the labarum does not appear. A grand opportunity for just the kind of political-religious propaganda that the Arch otherwise was expressly built to present, would have been unaccountably missed, if Eusebius' oath-confirmed account can be trusted, although it can be argued that still, in the early years after the battle, the will for an obvious religious support of Christianity by the emperor, hadn't been there yet, due to Constantine's personal faith or in fear of religious driven friction with the strongly idololatric regime. Its inscription does say that the emperor had saved the res publica INSTINCTU DIVINITATIS MENTIS MAGNITUDINE ("by greatness of mind and by instinct [or impulse] of divinity") and as in the majority of his predecessors Sol Invictus—the Invincible Sun (also identifiable in Apollo or Mithras)—is inscribed on the period's coinage although in 325 and thereafter the coinage ceases to be pagan, and Sol Invictus disappears at that date. In his Historia Ecclesiae Eusebius further reports that, after his victorious entry into Rome, Constantine had a statue of himself erected, "holding the sign of the Savior [the cross] in his right hand." There are no other reports to confirm such a monument. The Arch of Constantine seen from the Colosseum The arch seen from Via Triumphalis Detail of the arch (southern side, left) The Arch of Constantine is a triumphal arch in Rome, situated between the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill. ... Res publica is a Latin phrase, made of res + publica, literally meaning public thing or public matter. It is the origin of the word Republic. // The word publica is the feminine singular of the 1st- and 2nd-declension adjective publicus, publica, publicum, which is itself derived from an earlier form... Coin of Emperor Probus, circa 280, with Sol Invictus riding a quadriga, with legend SOLI INVICTO, to the Unconquered Sun. Note how the Emperor (on the left) wears a radiated solar crown, worn also by the god (to the right). ... For other uses, see Apollo (disambiguation). ... This article or section contains too much jargon and may need simplification or further explanation. ...


Whether Constantine I was the first Christian emperor supporting during his rule a peaceful transition to Christianity or an undecided pagan believer up until middle age, strongly influenced in his political-religious decisions by his Christian mother St. Helena (not to be confused with the Welsh Saint Helen of Caernarfon who lived 60 years later), is still in dispute among historians. Even though he doesn't appear in the Catholic calendar, he is celebrated together with his mother St. Helena as Equal-to-apostles (isapostoloi) on 21 May by both the different Orthodox churches as a saint of Christianity. The Latin Catholic church, on the contrary, although it celebrates St. Helena of Constantinople as a saint, has never placed him among the saints, but has been content with naming him "the Great," in "just and grateful remembrance of his services to the cause of Christianity and civilization". For other uses, see Christian (disambiguation). ... In Welsh mythology (mentioned in the Mabinogion), Elen was a heroine who magically built highways across her country so that the soldiers could more easily defend it from attackers. ... An equal-to-the-apostles is a special title given to some canonized Saints in Eastern Orthodox and Eastern Rite churches as an outstanding recognition of their service in spreading and assertion of Christianity comparable to that of the original apostles. ... Separate articles treat Eastern Orthodox Christianity and Orthodox Judaism. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Christianity is...


He is definitely the first of the Roman Emperors who bestowed imperial favor on Christianity by returning and legally protecting thereafter property taken from the early Church, the first Roman emperor that offered legal protection of the freedom of confession to all religions within the Empire, with the famous Milan's Edict in 313 AD and not only "toleration of other religions as indulgence" as Galerius did in 311 AD. Constantine I was the first to declare (March 7, 321) dies Solis—day of the sun, Sunday as the day of rest throughout the Empire, declared Rome a Christian city and allegedly placed his mother in charge of locating Christian relics, resulting in the discovery of the True Cross in the Holy Land. A small portion of the relics which she had located (together with the Nails), two of which she later gave to her son Constantine for protection, together with soil from the True Cross excavation site and big parts of the Cross itself were then stored in a room inside her palace in Rome around which the basilica of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme -housing the Passion relics- was built (also named St. Helena's chapel), which was later (15th century) converted into the Abbey of Santa Croce. The famous relics, whose authenticity is disputed, are now housed in a Chapel (the Cappella delle Reliquie), built in 1930 by architect Florestano di Fausto. They also include: a part of the Elogium or Ogium or Titulus Crucis, i.e. the panel which was hanged to the Christ's Cross; two thorns of his crown; the third and incomplete nail; and three small wooden pieces of the True Cross itself. A much larger piece of the holy cross was brought from Santa Croce in Gerusalemme to St. Peter's Basilica on instruction of Pope Urban VIII in the year 1629. It is kept nearby the statue of St. Helena, completed by Andrea Bolgi in 1639. For the architectural structure, see Church (building). ... The Edict of Milan was a letter that proclaimed religious toleration in the Roman Empire. ... Galerius Maximianus (c. ... According to Christian tradition, the True Cross is the cross upon which Jesus was crucified. ... Relics that are claimed to be the Holy Nails with which Christ was crucified are objects of veneration among some Christians. ... The Passion is the theological term used for the suffering, both physical and mental, of Jesus in the hours prior to and including his trial and execution by crucifixion. ... Facade of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme. ... The current version of the article or section is written like an essay. ... The current version of the article or section is written like an essay. ... This article is about the famous building in Rome. ... Pope Urban VIII (April 1568 – July 29, 1644), born Maffeo Barberini, was Pope from 1623 to 1644. ... A classically balanced Saint Helena in the crossing of St. ...

Coin of Magnentius with large Chi-Rho at ecliptic angles
Coin of Magnentius with large Chi-Rho at ecliptic angles

As for the labarum, its first dateable appearances are numismatic: the usurper Magnentius appears to have been the first to use the chi-rho monogram flanked by Alpha and Omega, on the reverse of some coins minted in 353 (illustration.[10] Image File history File links Double_Centenionalis_Magnentius-XR-s4017. ... Image File history File links Double_Centenionalis_Magnentius-XR-s4017. ... Magnentius (303–August 11, 353) was a Roman usurper (January 18, 350 – August 11, 353). ... Numismatics (ancient Greek: νομισματική) is the scientific study of money and its history in all its varied forms. ... Magnentius (303–August 11, 353) was a Roman usurper (January 18, 350 – August 11, 353). ...

On the reverse of this coin struck under Vetriano, the emperor is holding two labara, the ensigns introduced by his ancestor Constantine I.
On the reverse of this coin struck under Vetriano, the emperor is holding two labara, the ensigns introduced by his ancestor Constantine I.

In medieval art, during and after the Great Schism between the Eastern and Western churches, the labarum theme is absent, reappearing suddenly in the Renaissance and classical periods, after Constantinople's fall and the end of the Byzantine Empire, where the phrase is frequently shown written out in the sky. Vetriano (AD 350). ... Vetriano (AD 350). ... On the reverse of this coin struck under Vetriano, the emperor is holding two labara, the ensigns introduced by his ancestor Constantine I (emperor). ... For other uses, see Constantine I (disambiguation). ... For the later Papal Schism in Avignon, see Western Schism. ...


The labarum has since been interpreted by Christians all over the world as a symbol of Christianity. Because it is composed of the combined chi and rho it is sometimes referred to as the "monogram of Christ". Some Protestant Christians, especially Restorationists, reject its use due to what they believe to be pagan origins, although it was already in widespread use by Christians in the 3rd century, mostly on sarcophagi. Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Christianity is... The Chi-Rho, a monogram of the first two letters in the Greek word for Christ E and L embroider for clothes and bedding, for a wife by the initials E L or L E A monogram is a motif made by overlapping or combining two or more letters or... Restorationism is not a single religious movement, but a wave of comparably motivated movements that arose in the eastern United States and Canada in the early 19th century in the wake of the Second Great Awakening. ... // Overview Events 212: Constitutio Antoniniana grants citizenship to all free Roman men 212-216: Baths of Caracalla 230-232: Sassanid dynasty of Persia launches a war to reconquer lost lands in the Roman east 235-284: Crisis of the Third Century shakes Roman Empire 250-538: Kofun era, the first... The Etruscan Sarcophagus of the Spouses, at the National Etruscan Museum. ...

Labarum chi-rho, second half of the 12th century, from the Augustine convent of Montréjeau (Haute-Garonne, France) (Musée de Cluny)
Labarum chi-rho, second half of the 12th century, from the Augustine convent of Montréjeau (Haute-Garonne, France) (Musée de Cluny)

The interpretation of its use as a specifically Christian symbol is reinforced by the fact that Julian the Apostate removed it from his insignia, and that it was restored to use by his Christian successors. Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 600 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1600 × 1600 pixel, file size: 1. ... Image File history File links Metadata Size of this preview: 600 × 600 pixelsFull resolution (1600 × 1600 pixel, file size: 1. ... The Musée de Cluny as viewed from the nearby park The Lady and the Unicorn tapestry Thermes de Cluny: caldarium The Musée de Cluny, officially known as Musée National du Moyen Âge, is a museum in Paris, France. ... Flavius Claudius Iulianus (331–June 26, 363), was a Roman Emperor (361–363) of the Constantinian dynasty. ...


It is widely believed that after the Edict of Milan many legionnaires also were tattooed with the labarum on their right forearm.[citation needed]


"Labarum" is also used for any ecclesiastical banner, such as those carried around in processions as well as under the name "the holy lavaro" ( Greek: Το Άγιο Λάβαρο ) for the set of early national Greek flags, blessed by the Greek Orthodox Church, under which the Greeks united, before the commense and during the Greek Revolution (1821) against the Ottoman Empire which was occupying Greece at the time. Combatants Greek guerilla forces Ottoman Empire forces Commanders Kolokotronis Vrionis, Ibrahim Pasha Strength Casualties {{{notes}}} The Greek War of Independence, also known as the Greek Revolution, was a successful war waged by the Greeks between 1821 and 1827 to win independence from the Ottoman Empire. ...


It also gives the name (Labaro) to a suburb of Rome adjacent to Prima Porta, one of the sites where the appearance of this symbol is placed. Labaro is a suburb of Rome located 11 kilometres north of its center along the Via Flaminia, just outside of the Grande Raccordo Anulare highway, and adiacent to Prima Porta (Latitude: 41. ... Nickname: Motto: SPQR: Senatus Populusque Romanus Location of the city of Rome (yellow) within the Province of Rome (red) and region of Lazio (grey) Coordinates: Region Lazio Province Province of Rome Founded 21 April 753 BC Government  - Mayor Walter Veltroni Area  - City 1,285 km²  (580 sq mi)  - Urban 5... Prima Porta now a distant suburb 14. ...


Decline of use

Wikimedia Commons has media related to:
Chi Rho

Image File history File links This is a lossless scalable vector image. ... Image File history File links Commons-logo. ...

See also

Minoan symbolic labrys of gold, 2nd millennium BC: many have been found in the sacred cave of Arkalochori on Crete) Labrys is the term for a doubleheaded axe, known to the Classical Greeks as pelekus πέλεκυς or sagaris (the term for a single-bladed axe being hÄ“mipelekus half-pelekus, e. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Christian symbolism... A Christogram is a monogram or combination of letters which forms an abbreviation for the name of Jesus Christ, and is traditionally used as a Christian symbol. ... The relationship between Constantine I and Christianity entails both the nature of the conversion of the emperor to Christianity, and his relations with the Christian Church. ... Cantabri Lábaro. ... Ammianus Marcellinus (325/330-after 391) was a Roman historian who wrote during Late Antiquity. ... The Arch of Constantine seen from the Colosseum The arch seen from Via Triumphalis Detail of the arch (southern side, left) The Arch of Constantine is a triumphal arch in Rome, situated between the Colosseum and the Palatine Hill. ... A triumphal arch is a structure in the shape of a monumental archway, usually built to celebrate a victory in war. ... Combatants Constantinian forces Maxentian forces Commanders Flavius Valerius Aurelius Constantinus Marcus Aurelius Valerius Maxentius† Strength ~50000 men ~75000-120000 men Casualties Unknown Unknown The Battle of Milvian Bridge took place on October 28, 312 between the Roman Emperors Constantine the Great and Maxentius. ... Topics in Christianity Movements · Denominations · Other religions Ecumenism · Preaching · Prayer Music · Liturgy · Calendar Symbols · Art · Criticism Important figures Apostle Paul · Church Fathers Constantine · Athanasius · Augustine Anselm · Aquinas · Palamas · Luther Calvin · Wesley Arius · Marcion of Sinope Archbishop of Canterbury · Catholic Pope Coptic Pope · Ecumenical Patriarch Christianity Portal This box:      Christianity is... Battle of the Milvian Bridge, Raphael, Vatican Rooms. ... This article is about the symbol. ... An example of a lauburu: each arm can be drawn with three sweeps of a compass The lauburu or Basque cross has four comma-shaped heads similar to the Japanese tomoe. ... Folk etymology is a term used in two distinct ways: A commonly held misunderstanding of the origin of a particular word, a false etymology. ...

Notes

  1. ^ In Unicode, the Chi-Rho symbol is encoded at U+2627 (☧), and for Coptic at U+2CE9 (⳩).
  2. ^ Nevertheless, see H. Grégoire, "L'étymologie de 'Labarum'" Byzantion 4 (1929:477-82).
  3. ^ Lactantius, On the Deaths of the Persecutors, chapter 44.
  4. ^ MacMullen, Constantine, 1969.
  5. ^ Timaeus 8.36b and c.
  6. ^ Robert Grigg, "Symphōnian Aeidō tēs Basileias": An Image of Imperial Harmony on the Base of the Column of Arcadius" The Art Bulletin 59.4 (December 1977:469-482) p. 477.
  7. ^ Rahner, Greek Myths and Christian Mystery, tr. B. Battershaw (New York) 1963:49f, noticed in Grigg 1977:477 and note 59.
  8. ^ Justin, Apologia 1.60.
  9. ^ Noted by Grigg 1977:477, note 42
  10. ^ W. Kellner, Libertas und Christogramm (Karlsruhe) 1968:57ff, noted in Grigg 1977:469 note 4.

The Unicode Standard, Version 5. ... The Coptic alphabet is an alphabet used for writing the Coptic language. ...

Further reading

  • Grabar, Christian Iconography: A Study of its Origins ((Princeton University Press) 1968:165ff
  • R. Grosse, "Labarum", Realencyclopädie der klassischen Altertumswissenschaft vol. 12, pt 1(Stuttgart) 1924:240-42.
  • H. Grégoire, "L'étymologie de 'Labarum'" Byzantion 4 (1929:477-82).
  • A. Lipinsky, "Labarum" Lexikon der christlichen Ikonographie 3 (Rome:1970)

  Results from FactBites:
 
Labarum (Chi-Rho) (350 words)
The original labarum, designed under the emperor's direction on the day subsequent to the appearance of the "cross of light", is described by Eusebius (Vita Constant., I:26) as "a long spear, overlaid with gold", which with a transverse bar formed the figure of a cross.
On one coin, for instance, the portrait of the emperor and his sons are represented on the banner instead of on the staff; on a second the banner is inscribed with the monogram and surmounted by the equal-armed cross, while the royal portraits, though on the shaft, are below instead of above the banner.
In form, the labarum of Constantine was an adaptation of the already existing cavalry standard of the Roman army; the pagan emblems were merely replaced by Christian symbols.
Labarum - LoveToKnow 1911 (164 words)
LABARUM, the sacred military standard of the early Christian Roman emperors, first adopted by Constantine the Great after his miraculous vision in 312, although, according to Gibbon, he did not exhibit it to the army till 323.
The name seems to have been known before, and the banner was simply a Christianized form of the Roman cavalry standard.
The derivation of the word labarum is disputed; it appears to be connected with the Basque labarva, signifying standard.
  More results at FactBites »

 
 

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