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Skeletons Of Ancient Saints Embellished With Fancy Jewels Found In Secret Catholic Vaults

Can these corpse get any fancier than this?

Inah Garcia

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When we face death, we cannot take every material thing we posses in this earthly world. The fancy dresses, the shiny jewelry and designer bags are nothing but mere objects that cannot cross over to the afterlife. But have you ever heard of catacomb saints? The practice behind these saints are quite creepy and we are sure you’ll agree.

Catacomb saints are corpse of ancient Roman leaders that are embellished with jewels and fancy clothing before being transported to different locations as saints. This is an ancient Catholic practice that was discovered in 1578. Most of these corpse were distributed in Europe as relics of Catholic martyrs and are displayed in different locations for public viewing.

Art historian Paul Koudounaris was able to search for these catacomb saints and took really nice photos.

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Photo credit: Imgur
These corpse were said to be found in the most hidden religious places.

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Photo credit: Imgur
The corpse were sent to different Catholic churches across Europe to replace the holy artifacts destroyed during the Protestant Reformation in the 1500s.

catholic-martyr

Photo credit: Imgur
Precious stones, gold and jewels were intricately placed in each of the corpse.

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Photo credit: Imgur

Koudounaris authored a new book called Heavenly Bodies: Cult Treasures and Spectacular Saints from the Catacombs, where photos of the catacomb saints are featured. This is the first time that the skeletons are presented in print.

Many of the skeletons are of Rome’s lost martyrs.

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Paul also captured the fingers of female saint glittering with colorful rubies and pearls.

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One more beauty from the Crypt.

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Koudounaris had to photograph these skeletons through the glass.

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He used personal Windex to capture the historical images.

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It was quite not easy for him to find the right angle through the glass.

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In his book, Koudounaris says death has never looked so beautiful.

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