S. Nazario e Celso. RAVENNA. 48. Route. 329
Jerusalem and Bethlehem. Above, at the sides, (1.) the four Evange¬
lists sitting, and Isaiah and Jeremiah standing, (r.) Moses as a shepherd,
above which he is seen removing his sandals at the burning bush; (1.)
he receives the Tables of the Law; on the right, in the central scene, an
altar with bread and wine; at the sides the blood-sacrifice of Abel and
the bloodless offering of Melchisedech. On the left in the centre, a table
at which the three angels are entertained by Abraham, Sarah at the door,
and sacrifice of Isaac. In the archway busts of Christ (repainted), the
Apostles, and SS. Gervasius and Protasius, sons of S. Vitalis. On the right,
at the entrance to the choir, an admirable ''Greek Relief from a temple of
Neptune, representing his throne with shells, trident, and genii; op¬
posite to it a modern copy (or perhaps also antique). — In the portico of
the sacristy a "Roman Relief, the Apotheosis of the emperor: the goddess
Roma is observed sitting on the left; next to her is Julius Csesar, with
Augustus and Claudius adjacent. On the left, a fragment of a procession
with victims, forming part of the same work. Opposite are early-Christian
reliefs: Daniel in the lions1 den, Christ imparting a blessing, and the
Raising of Lazarus (7th cent.).
To the N., at the back of the church, is the Monument of the
Exarch Isaac (PL 42; C, 3; d. 641), consisting of a sarcophagus in
a small recess with a Greek inscription, erected by his wife Susanna.
Adjacent to it are several other ancient inscriptions. On the right
a Roman warrior in relief.
The custodian of S. Vitale also keeps the key of —
*S. Nazario e Celso (PL 26; C, 2), the Mausoleum of Galla
Placidia, founded about 440 by that Empress, daughter of Theo-
dosius the Great and mother of Valentinian III. The church is in
the form of a Latin cross, 49 ft. long, 41 ft. broad, with a dome.
The Interior is adorned with beautiful ''Mosaics, on a dark blue
ground, of the 5th cent.. in the dome the symbols of the four Evangelists;
in the four arches eight apostles (or perhaps prophets), between which
are doves drinking out of a vase (resembling the celebrated mosaic on
the Capitol); under the vaulting of the right and left transept are the
other four apostles (?) in gilded mosaic; between them are stags at a
spring. Over the door is Christ as a young shepherd; opposite is the
triumph of Christian faith, in which Christ (represented here with a
beard) is committing to the flames an open book, probably heretical; the
adjacent cabinet contains the gospels. — The Altar, constructed of trans¬
parent Oriental alabaster and intended to be illuminated by inserted
lights, was formerly in S. Vitale; behind it is the large marble Sarco¬
phagus of Galla Placidia (d. 450), once enriched with plates of silver, in
which the Empress was interred in a sitting posture. On the right of
this monument is a marble sarcophagus decorated with Christian emblems,
containing the remains of the Emp. Honorius, brother of Galla Placidia;
on the left that of Constantius III., her second husband (417) and father
of Valentinian III.; at the sides of the entrance are two small sarcophagi
containing the remains of the tutors of Valentinian and his sister Honoria.
These are the only monuments of the emperors of ancient Rome which
still remain in their original position.
S. Giovanni Battista (PL 13; D, 3), with an ancient round tower,
erected by Galla Placidia in 438 for her confessor St. Barbatian,
was almost entirely remodelled in 1683. The columns of the in¬
terior belong to the original church. The early-Christian sarcophagi
which the church formerly contained have been placed on the space
in front of it.
To the E. the Strada Nuova di Porta Serrata leads to the left
to the Rotonda (p. 331), and to the right to the basilica of —