The Palm for Paradise

These images, found in Palermo’s Palatine Chapel (and importantly, also at the Cathedral of Monreale) depict palm trees. Palm trees are symbolic of different things: In Christianity, palm branches are attributed to the “victory of the spirit over the flesh” (Wikipedia); hence why many martyrs are depicted holding palm branches. We also need to consider…

Watch Your Step

Every inch of the Cappella Palatina is embellished with intricate mosaics of inlaid marble, colorful stones, and golden glass tiles. This floor detail illustrates the multi-cultural mix (Norman, Arab, Greek, and Byzantine) that existed during Roger II’s 12th-century rule, when the Palazzo dei Normanni’s chapel was built.

An Arab-Norman-Greek-Byzantine Star

Every inch of the Cappella Palatina is embellished with intricate mosaics of inlaid marble, colorful stones, and golden glass tiles. This detail illustrates the multi-cultural mix (Norman, Arab, Greek, and Byzantine) that existed during Roger II’s 12th-century rule, when the Palazzo dei Normanni’s chapel was built.