Art/ Collection/ Art Object
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Table Base with Jonah Swallowed and Cast Up by the Big Fish

Date:
early 300s
Geography:
Made in Asia Minor
Culture:
Roman
Medium:
Marble, white
Dimensions:
Overall: 19 1/2 x 24 x 13 1/4 in. (49.5 x 61 x 33.7 cm) Base: 9 5/8 x 10 1/4 in. (24.4 x 26 cm) weight: 181lb. (82.1kg)
Classification:
Sculpture-Stone
Credit Line:
Gift of John Todd Edgar, 1877
Accession Number:
77.7
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 300
The sculpture portrays two key episodes from the biblical story of Johan in succession: first, he is thrown overboard during a great storm at sea and swallowed by a great fish; then, after three days, Jonah is saved when the fish vomits. A testament to the power of faith, the Jonah story was embraced by Christians as foretelling the story of Jesus' resurrection from the dead after three days.
Found in 1876, at Tarsos (now Tarsus, southern Turkey); John Todd Edgar, US Consul at Beirut, Nashville (until 1877)
Lowrie, Walter. "A Jonah Monument in the New York Metropolitan Museum." American Journal of Archaeology: The Journal of the Archaeological Institute of America 5, no. 1 (January-March 1901). pp. 51-57.

Krumbacher, Karl. "Bibliographische Notizen und Kleinere Mitteilungen." Byzantinische Zeitschrift 11 (1902). p. 274.

Strzygowski, Josef. Kleinasien, ein Neuland der Kunstgeschichte: Kirchenaufnahmen von J. W. Crowfoot und J. I. Smirnov unter Benutzung einiger Ergebnisse der Expedition nach der asiatischen Türkei des Kais. Leipzig: J. C. Hinrichs, 1903. p. 196.

Cabrol, Fernand, Henri Leclercq, and Henri Irénée Marrou. Dictionnaire d'Archéologie Chrétienne et de Liturgie. Vol. 1-15. Paris, 1907-1953. pp. 2572-2631.

Dalton, O. M. Byzantine Art and Archeology. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1911.

Ricci, Seymour de. Catalogue d'une Collection de Miniatures Gothiques et Persanes Appartenant à Léonce Rosenberg. Paris: Montassier et Odend'hal, 1913. no. 73, p. 26, fig. X.

Wulff, Oskar. Altchristliche und Byzantinische Kunst: Volume 1, Die altchristliche Kunst von ihren Anfängen bis zur Mitte des ersten Jahrhunderts. Handbuch der Kunstwissenschaft. Berlin: Akademische Verlagsgesellschaft Athenaion, 1914. p. 149.

Dalton, O. M. East Christian Art: A Survey of the Monuments. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1925. p. 185.

Karl, Ludwig. "Notice sur un Légende Historique Conservé á Rome." Revue Archéologique 21, ser. 5 (1925). p. 296.

The International Studio 85 (1926). p. 84.

Lowrie, Walter. Art in the Early Church. Revised ed. New York: Pantheon Books, 1947. pp. 3, 84, fig. 22b.

Bonner, Campbell, and Cambridge University Press. "The Story of Jonah on a Magical Amulet." Harvard Theological Review 41, no. 1 (1948). pp. 31-37.

Grabar, André. Sculptures Byzantines de Constantinople: IVe-Xe siècle. Bibliothèque archéologique et historique de l'Institut français d'archéologie d'Istanbul, Vol. 17. Paris: Librairie A. Maisonneuve, 1963. p. 46, fig. XI.

Ostoia, Vera K. The Middle Ages: Treasures from the Cloisters and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Los Angeles: Los Angeles County Museum of Art, 1969. no. 5, pp. 22-3, 251.

Beeson, Nora B., ed. Guide to The Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1972. no. 4, p. 211.

Narkiss, Bezalel. "The Sign of Jonah." Gesta 18, no. 1 (1979). p. 65, fig. 1.

Weitzmann, Kurt, ed. Age of Spirituality: Late Antique and Early Christian Art, Third to Seventh Century. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1979. no. 369, pp. 411-412.

Husband, Timothy B., and Charles T. Little. Europe in the Middle Ages. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1987. no. 9, p. 23.



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