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Eastern Christians in Anthropological Perspective$
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Chris Hann and Hermann Goltz

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780520260559

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520260559.001.0001

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Icons and/or Statues?

Icons and/or Statues?

The Greek Catholic Divine Liturgy in Hungary and Romania, between Renewal and Purification

(p.79) 3 Icons and/or Statues?
Eastern Christians in Anthropological Perspective

Chris Hann

Hermann Goltz

University of California Press

Byzantine icons and Latin statues belong to two different, if not opposite, religious worlds: Orthodoxy and Roman Catholicism. Yet they can be found together in many Greek Catholic churches in contemporary Hungary and Romania. This chapter, based on ethnographical fieldwork conducted in northern Transylvania (1998–2001) and northeastern Hungary (2004–2005), focuses on liturgical, aesthetic, and architectural transformations within the Greek Catholic churches in Romania and Hungary. These churches, like the other Greek Catholic churches of Central Europe, are located on the border between Eastern and Western Christianity and present an original synthesis of Catholic canon and Byzantine ritual, a mixture of Latin and Eastern traditions, and of “official” and “popular” religious elements. While officially always following the Byzantine rite, these churches have been subjected to Latinization through the centuries.

Keywords:   Byzantine icons, Latin statues, Greek Catholic churches, Hungary, Romania, Christianity

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