EARLY CHRISTIAN SCULPTOR, Italian
(active 5th century in Ravenna)

The Twelve Apostles' Sarcophagus

5th century
Marble
Sant'Apollinare in Classe, Ravenna

On the main panel of this 5th-century sarcophagus Christ, in the centre, gives Paul the scroll representing the Law, while Peter, on Jesus' left, carries a cross, representing his crucifixion and the keys in a veiled hand. Other apostles carry martyr's crowns or pray with one hand raised.

The lid is decorated with three monograms made of Xs laid across Greek crosses, with reliefs of birds, vines and crosses on the ends.