Three Roman Altars and Ciboria with their Pre-Conciliar Altar Ornaments

Today seemed like a good day for a lighter post showing three classic Roman churches that include the ciborium magnum. What is slightly different about these photos -- compared to the myriad of contemporary colour photos in high resolution that are available online -- is that they also show the altars in their earlier configuration when they still retained their traditional altar ornaments in proportions more usual to the past few centuries. 

We begin with two views of the high altar of the basilica of St. Paul Outside the Walls.

San Paolo Fuori le Mura

San Paolo Fuori le Mura

Next we have church of Santa Maria in Cosmedin:

Finally, we conclude with the church of Santa Cecilia in Trastavere. 

Santa Cecilia in Trastevere

As noted in our piece from a few months ago, The Visual and Symbolic Impact of the Spacing and Proportions of the Candlesticks and Cross as Seen in Two Papal Basilicas, this sort of arrangement is frequently much more befitting these traditional altar arrangements with their vertical heights, for they help to draw attention to the altar itself -- much like the ciborium itself is meant to do.

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