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The lamb and the peacock, the Catacombs of Priscilla
The lamb symbol represents the crucified Jesus pierced by a lance, the “Lamb of God” who offers himself in sacrifice for the salvation of man. In the year 692, the Council of Constantinople, to avoid the confusion of religions and beliefs that could arise from using symbols similar to those of faiths such the cult of Dionysus—where the faithful sacrificed a lamb to induce the god to return from the underworld—it was decided that in Christian art forms, Christ on the cross should be represented no longer as a lamb but in human form. The peacock is the symbol of the Resurrection and eternal life. Since peacocks lose their feathers during the winter and acquire new even more beautiful ones in the spring, the Christians of the first centuries adopted the peacock as a symbol of the resurrection.

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