The Lucca Crucifix

8th century
Carved cedar
Cathedral of St. Martin, Lucca, Italy

Local legend has it that this crucifix was carved at the time of the Crucifixion by Nicodemus and that it arrived in Lucca miraculously in 782. That date may well approximate the time when the cross was actually created: From the 6th through the 9th or 10th centuries it was traditional to represent the crucified Christ as priest and king – in this case by liturgical vestments and a crown.

The angels and circular frame appear to be from a later date.

Read more about Crosses and Crucifixes.

Source: Tim Frank, University of Illinois<