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Catacombs

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Catacombs, although most notable as underground passageways and cemeteries, also house many decorations. There are thousands of decorations in the centuries-old catacombs of Rome, catacombs of Paris, and other known and unknown catacombs, some of which include inscriptions, paintings, statues, ornaments, and other items placed in the graves over the years. Most of these decorations were used to identify, immortalize and show respect to the dead. Decorations in the catacombs of Rome were primarily decorated with images and words exalting Christ or depicting scenes from the Old and New Testaments of the Bible. Much of the sculpture work and art, other than engravings on the walls or tombs, has been preserved in places such as the Museum of St. John Lateran, Christian Museum of Berlin University, and the Vatican. Three representations of Christ as Orpheus charming animals with peaceful music have been found in the catacombs of Domatilla and St. Callista. Another figure was made of gilded glass and dates back to the fourth century, featuring Jesus with the world balanced in his hand and a scroll at his feet.

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