Friday, June 26, 2020

A Long Revered Relic Is Found to Be Europe’s Oldest Surviving Wooden Statue

By Elisabetta Povoledo
The Volto Santo de Lucca in the Cathedral of San Martino in Lucca, Italy.Credit...Shutterstock
ROME — For centuries, in a picturesque Tuscan town near the Mediterranean coast, legions of pilgrims came to venerate one of Christendom’s most treasured relics — an eight-foot-tall wooden crucifix known as the “Volto Santo de Lucca.” According to the legend, “The Holy Face of Lucca” had been sculpted by a divine hand and remained hidden for centuries before an Italian bishop discovered it on a pilgrimage to the Holy Land in the eighth century. The crucifix was shown to be the oldest surviving wooden carving in Europe. And it remains in remarkable condition, the downcast eyes of Christ on the cross still captured in dramatic detail. [More]