Photo © Israel Museum, Jerusalem, by Avraham Hay
Pottery ostracon bearing the formula of the Christian creed
Provenance unknown
6th–7th century
Pottery
H: 16 cm
Israel Museum, Jerusalem
From the Herz collection
Accession number: 69.74.312
 
 
This inscribed pottery sherd, written in ink (ostracon), bears a text written in Greek. The text is the Niceo-Constantinopolitan creed, which includes some of the most important doctrines of Christian faith, such as belief in the Holy Spirit, the role of baptism in the remission of sins, the resurrection of the dead, and the world to come. The creed dates to the mid-fifth century. Its text may have been written out by a monk according to the bishop’s direction, with copies distributed to proselytes in order to help them memorize the text prior to their conversion.

Publications:
Israeli, Yael, and Mevorach, David, Cradle of Christianity, The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 2000, English / Hebrew

Exhibition:
Cradle of Christianity, Israel Museum, Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel, Spring 2000 - Winter 2001

Digital presentation of this object was made possible by: The Ridgefield Foundation, New York, in memory of Henry J. and Erna D. Leir