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date: 29 February 2020

Abstract and Keywords

In the past few decades, the post-Classical reuse of fragments of sculpture and architecture, commonly known as spolia, has become a subject of much scholarly interest. As a result, many of the interpretations first voiced in the Renaissance have been critically assessed. But others have not, such as the idea that the reuse of temple architecture was a statement of Christian victory over paganism. Building on the recent reassessment of evidence for temple conversion in Late Antiquity, this chapter suggests that reuse evoked different reactions from various audiences and at different moments in time. Consequently, it is likely that in many cases the religious interpretation of spolia was not a factor in the initial moment of reuse, but had its origin one or more generations later.

Keywords: spolia, reuse, temple conversion, architecture, religious triumphalism

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