Cameraphoto Arte, Venice/Art Resource, NY

FROM PAGAN TO CHRISTIAN. In the ancient world, it was common for Christians to borrow from the prolific Greco-Roman images that decorated both public and private spaces, and give them Christian meaning. For example, the popular image of the handsome Endymion, who lies sleeping underneath a tree as the goddess Selene approaches him in this Roman imperial-era mosaic from the House of Icarus in Oudna, Tunisia, was later borrowed by Christians to depict the figure of Jonah sleeping underneath the vine, as described in Jonah 4 and depicted in this fourth-century C.E. mosaic from the floor pavement of the cathedral in Aquileia, Italy.