The Vine

The plant most frequently seen in art and alluded to in writing was the grapevine, brought to the Greek and Roman world by Dionysos, a god associated with resurrection and eternal life. From Homeric times, wine was poured on the remains of heroes and royalty, and grapevines were part of the funerary ritual. As the garden where the vine grew, the vineyard signified the "house of Israel" for the Jews and the Church for early Christians.

  A Laboring Putto
116. On a sarcophagus lid from the catacombs of Villa Torlonia, a putto harvests grapes.
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