Ivory Pyxis Depicting Saint Menas

Illustration

by
published on 25 September 2016

This ivory pyxis (round box) shows the saint Menas with camels. His shrine near Alexandria in Egypt was a popular pilgrim site in the Byzantine Empire. Menas, an Egyptian soldier, was executed by Emperor Diocletian (reigned 284-305 CE) for practising Christianity. When the camels carrying his body to burial refused to move beyond a certain spot, it was taken as a sign that he should be buried there. Byzantine, 6th century CE. Made in Alexandria, Egypt. Found in Italy, Rome, San Paolo Fuori le Mura. (The British Museum, London).



About the Author

Osama Shukir Muhammed Amin
Associate Professor of Neurology and lover of the Cradle of Civilization, Mesopotamia. I'm very interested in Mesopotamian history and always try to take photos of archaeological sites and artifacts in museums, both in Iraq and around the world.

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