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Depictions of the Church Serpent in France: Characteristics, Uses, Symbolisms

Abstract : Among the aerophones, the serpent is probably the less represented instrument in visual sources. Its bulky morphology, little elegant, is not easy for artists wishing to insert it in a still life and in other compositions. But its organological features are quite detailed when it is represented in reliefs and cascades of instruments in churches, underlining its liturgical function. The serpent is also used in fashion plates depicting the trades in Paris and in commercial images for publishers and dealers. In revolutionary images, it is an allegory of concord or the symbol of Church criticism. Popular images testify also the continuous role of serpent players in village’s churches until the First World War.
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Contributor : Florence Gétreau <>
Submitted on : Saturday, December 27, 2014 - 6:29:12 PM
Last modification on : Sunday, January 3, 2021 - 6:22:03 PM
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  • HAL Id : halshs-01098629, version 1


Florence Gétreau. Depictions of the Church Serpent in France: Characteristics, Uses, Symbolisms. Der Zink - Geschichte, Instrumente und Bauweise, Stiftung Kloster Michaelstein, Oct 2009, Michaelstein, Germany. pp.213-247. ⟨halshs-01098629⟩



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