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Aquileia - Judaisim and/or Early Christianity?

Author Solivagant
#1 | Posted: 27 Aug 2009 04:44 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Some ongoing "research" I was doing led me to believe that there were pre-Nicean (ie 325AD) Christian remains in Aquileia in the form of Mosaics in the Basilica which would justify a connection to "Early Christianity". A number of documents do indeed claim a date going back to the reign of Bishop Theodore (314-318AD) e.g see Mosaic Pavements in s&source=bl&ots=ZKxmAnY-Lz&sig=2OU5ltVTv-KGhE4qqgxQpAUcXQY&hl=en&ei=yjiWSqunKeWhjAfOy u2vDA&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=result&resnum=8#v=onepage&q=aquileia%20mosaics&f=false

But further Googling came up with this
So, whereas the first link identifies mosaics such a that for Jonah indicate a Christian provenance, this one claims that they demonstrate a Judaic link!
Now is this a Jewish historian (Samuel Kurinsky) just "kite flying" ("The Judaic community of Aquileia is among the many Judaic communities of substantial size and importance whose history has escaped the attention of historians" and "All the evidence lends credence to the proposition that here in Aquileia stood the cultural and administrative center of a Judaic community of impressive size and importance") or do the mosaics only justify a link to "Jewish Religion" or to "Early Christianity" - or both?

The AB review states "The subjects depicted in the many panels are varied and vivid. They include symbolic subjects such as the struggle between a cock (light/Christianity) and a tortoise (darkness/paganism), many birds, associated with Paradise, portraits of donors, scenes from the Gospels, and dedicatory inscriptions. At the eastern end there is a sea scene with twelve fishermen, representing the Apostles, along with the story of the prophet Jonah. An inscription commemorating Bishop Theodorus was added after his death."
There is no mention by the AB of any Judaic aspects for these or any other remains.

Kurinsky's theory that the mosaics in the "Paleo Christian museum" are those from a synagogue is not mentioned either by the AB ("There is a second basilican complex at Monastero, now serving as the Palaeochristian Museum. This equally imposing 4th century structure also houses a remarkable floor mosaic.") - which still leaves open the possibility!

Regarding the Basilica, the AB states "Theodorus constructed a horseshoe-shaped complex of 32 three main halls, but this proved inadequate to house the worshippers and pilgrims and so in 345 a vast structure replaced the northern arm." This places the building as no later than 318AD. Kurinsky claims that the mosaics predate the Basilican construction.

I think my view would be to make both "connections" for Aquileia ("Jewish Religion" and "Early Christianity") - perhaps with a "caveat comment". Does Assif (or anyone else) have any additional knowledge/information on the subject?

PS. I think this link justifies an Aquileaian connection for Protective Shelters also?

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 Aquileia - Judaisim and/or Early Christianity?

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