Following on the success of his book The Empire of Death , which has attracted a global cult following, Paul Koudounaris brings the catacomb saints out of the darkness with this astonishing volume, which includes arresting images of more than seventy spectacular jeweled skeletons and the fascinating stories of dozens more, accompanied by rare archive material. This is the first time that some of these incredible relics - both intriguing historical artifacts and masterpieces of artistic craftsmanship in their own right - have appeared in a publication, with Koudounaris gaining unprecedented access to photograph in some of the most secretive religious establishments in Europe. This will be essential reading for goths, art historians and everyone in between.
Paul Koudounaris has a doctorate in Art History from the University of California and has written widely on European ossuaries and charnel houses for both academic and popular journals.
Introduction: Blessed Bones * 1. Holy Bodies: Relics and the Roman Catacombs * 2. The Church Triumphant: Constructing the Catacomb Saints * 3. Communal Property: Jeweled Skeletons and Civic Identity 4. The Mighty Will Fall: The End of the Reign of the Catacomb Saints Notes, Acknowledgments, List of Sites, Index