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Rubina Raja

Portrait Habit and the Funerary Portraiture of the Decapolis

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  • Achim Lichtenberger, Westfälische Wilhelms Universität Münster, Germany
  • Rubina Raja
Funerary portraiture in the Near East has become a topic of discussion in recent years in scholarship, which has displayed a surge of interest in the funerary sphere in general. However, the funerary sculpture of northern Jordan, also termed the Decapolis region for historical reasons, has received little attention in this connection. There are several explanations for this situation. Firstly, the sculpture, often in the form of funerary busts or stelae, is not what we, with the training we have had as classical archaeologists, perceive to be highquality or fine craftsmanship. Secondly, these funerary sculptures were made of the locally available materials, most often rough types of stone, such as basalt and limestone. Therefore, they have not received much attention in an art-historical context or within the context of classical archaeological scholarship and, when
mentioned, they have been described solely as examples of Roman provincial art and have not been considered within their own cultural and historical contexts. A
third reason is that the funerary portraiture from the Decapolis region has never been collected in a comprehensive corpus.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationFunerary Portraiture in Greater Roman Syria
EditorsMichael Blömer, Rubina Raja
Place of publicationTurnhout
PublisherBrepols Publishers
Publication year17 Dec 2019
Pages133-150
Chapter9
ISBN (print)978-2-503-57633-6
Publication statusPublished - 17 Dec 2019
SeriesStudies in Classical Archaeology
Volume6

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