This unit studies the origins and growth of Christian art by exploring ways in which liturgy and devotions in the early church found expression in visual culture. Themes and topics to be presented will include: the art of the catacombs; the centrality of monasticism and of the city of Constantinople in Eastern Christianity; the mosaics of Ravenna and Rome; the emergence of new art forms such as the icon; the iconoclastic controversy; the impact of Byzantine art and architecture in the medieval West e.g. Monreale in Norman Sicily and San Marco in Venice.

Unit Code: CH2012Y

Points: 18.0

Unit Level: Undergraduate Level 2

Unit Discipline: Church History

Delivery Mode: Face to Face

Proposing College: Yarra Theological Union

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Learning Outcomes


Identify the central iconographic themes of Early Christian and Byzantine art


Demonstrate ability to use basic vocabulary of visual analysis and historical inquiry in written communication


Exhibit an understanding of the various lenses (historical, spiritual) through which the interpreter views visual images.


Engage a range of primary and secondary source material to develop a coherent argument

Unit sequence

This unit is generally available as an elective unit in all undergraduate awards.


Lectures, tutorials


Type Description Wordcount Weight (%)

Essay 3000 words

3000 70.0
Material Culture Analysis (identification and description of artefacts)

Material Culture Analysis 1500 words

1500 30.0

Unit approved for the University of Divinity by John Capper on 30 Sep, 2019

Unit Record last updated: 2019-10-10 15:17:39 +1100