Metropolitan Museum of Art
The Metropolitan Museum of Art of New York City, colloquially "the Met", is the largest art museum in the United States. With 6,953,927 visitors to its three locations in 2018, it was the third most visited art museum in the world, its permanent collection contains over two million works, divided among seventeen curatorial departments. The main building, on the eastern edge of Central Park along Museum Mile in Manhattan's Upper East Side is by area one of the world's largest art galleries. A much smaller second location, The Cloisters at Fort Tryon Park in Upper Manhattan, contains an extensive collection of art and artifacts from Medieval Europe. On March 18, 2016, the museum opened the Met Breuer museum at Madison Avenue on the Upper East Side; the permanent collection consists of works of art from classical antiquity and ancient Egypt and sculptures from nearly all the European masters, an extensive collection of American and modern art. The Met maintains extensive holdings of African, Oceanian and Islamic art.
The museum is home to encyclopedic collections of musical instruments and accessories, as well as antique weapons and armor from around the world. Several notable interiors, ranging from 1st-century Rome through modern American design, are installed in its galleries; the Metropolitan Museum of Art was founded in 1870 for the purposes of opening a museum to bring art and art education to the American people. It opened on February 20, 1872, was located at 681 Fifth Avenue; the Met's permanent collection is curated by seventeen separate departments, each with a specialized staff of curators and scholars, as well as six dedicated conservation departments and a Department of Scientific Research. The permanent collection includes works of art from classical antiquity and ancient Egypt and sculptures from nearly all the European masters, an extensive collection of American and modern art; the Met maintains extensive holdings of African, Oceanian and Islamic art. The museum is home to encyclopedic collections of musical instruments and accessories, antique weapons and armor from around the world.
A great number of period rooms, ranging from 1st-century Rome through modern American design, are permanently installed in the Met's galleries. In addition to its permanent exhibitions, the Met organizes and hosts large traveling shows throughout the year; the current chairman of the board, Daniel Brodsky, was elected in 2011 and became chairman three years after director Philippe de Montebello retired at the end of 2008. On March 1, 2017, the BBC reported that Daniel Weiss, the Met's president and COO, would temporarily act as CEO for the museum. Following the departure of Thomas P. Campbell as the Met's director and CEO on June 30, 2017, the search for a new director of the museum was assigned to the human resources firm Phillips Oppenheim to present a new candidate for the position "by the end of the fiscal year in June" of 2018; the next director will report to Weiss as the current president of the museum. In April 2018, Max Hollein was named director. Beginning in the late 19th century, the Met started acquiring ancient art and artifacts from the Near East.
From a few cuneiform tablets and seals, the Met's collection of Near Eastern art has grown to more than 7,000 pieces. Representing a history of the region beginning in the Neolithic Period and encompassing the fall of the Sasanian Empire and the end of Late Antiquity, the collection includes works from the Sumerian, Sasanian, Assyrian and Elamite cultures, as well as an extensive collection of unique Bronze Age objects; the highlights of the collection include a set of monumental stone lamassu, or guardian figures, from the Northwest Palace of the Assyrian king Ashurnasirpal II. Though the Met first acquired a group of Peruvian antiquities in 1882, the museum did not begin a concerted effort to collect works from Africa and the Americas until 1969, when American businessman and philanthropist Nelson A. Rockefeller donated his more than 3,000-piece collection to the museum. Today, the Met's collection contains more than 11,000 pieces from sub-Saharan Africa, the Pacific Islands, the Americas and is housed in the 40,000-square-foot Rockefeller Wing on the south end of the museum.
The collection ranges from 40,000-year-old indigenous Australian rock paintings, to a group of 15-foot-tall memorial poles carved by the Asmat people of New Guinea, to a priceless collection of ceremonial and personal objects from the Nigerian Court of Benin donated by Klaus Perls. The range of materials represented in the Africa and Americas collection is undoubtedly the widest of any department at the Met, including everything from precious metals to porcupine quills; the Met's Asian department holds a collection of Asian art, of more than 35,000 pieces, arguably the most comprehensive in the US. The collection dates back to the founding of the museum: many of the philanthropists who made the earliest gifts to the museum included Asian art in their collections. Today, an entire wing of the museum is dedicated to the Asian collection, spans 4,000 years of Asian art; every Asian civilization is represented in the Met's Asian department, the pieces on display include every type of decorative art, from painting and printmaking to sculpture and metalworking.
The department is well known for its comprehensive collection of Chinese calligraphy and painting, as well as for its Indian sculptures and Tibetan works, the arts of Burma and Thailand. All three ancient religions of India – Hinduism and Jainism – are well represented in these s
Santa Maria della Scala (Siena)
Santa Maria della Scala is located in Siena, Italy. Now a museum, it was once an important civic hospital dedicated to caring for abandoned children, the poor, the sick, pilgrims. Revenues were earned from bequests and donations from the citizens of Siena the wealthy; the head of the hospital was the rector. Santa Maria della Scala was one of Europe's first hospitals and is one of the oldest hospitals still surviving in the world, it is considered one of Siena's 3 main artistic hubs. The Hospital gets its name from its position. Located across the Piazza del Duomo from Siena Cathedral, Santa Maria della Scala refers to its position across from the steps that lead into the Cathedral; the Hospital is made up of a complex of buildings. Those buildings have been enlarged and improved upon over the years, yet the Hospital's properties once included much of the Via del Capitano and land outside the city walls as well as other, smaller hospitals. Around the 13th and 14th centuries, the Hospital organized its land into large agricultural estates.
This is said to have "represented the largest concentration of land of the Sienese state". This agricultural land helped to financially support the Hospital's works. Particular sections of note include the Church of the Santissima Annuziata, built at the end of the 13th century but completely renovated towards the end of the 15th century, the Pellegrinaio; the Pellegrinaio is the main hall. It served as a location for public festivities; this hall, along with another to house women was built around 1325. The church of the Santissima Annuziata, built during the 13th century, was enlarged during the second part of the 15th century, along with the "vertical expansion" of the Palazzo del Rettore. Santa Maria della Scala was dedicated to its services. From at least as far back as 1193 up to the 18th century, the Hospital took on many philanthropic endeavors: Abandoned babies found their way to the Hospital. Meticulous records were kept of the details relating to each child, in order that the original parents may be able to find them.
The procedure for the children's care was implemented according to age: As infants, they were given to wet nurses later weaned and educated. At age 8, they were taught a trade and any profits they made were kept for them; when they reached 18, the children had the option of leaving. Those that chose to leave were given all their saved earnings, plus 100 soldi, a set of clothing, furnishings for a house. Girls were given an additional 50 lire as a dowry. Meals were served for the poor three times a week; the sick were given free meals and treatment. The Hospital's treatment of the sick was unusual for the time: their policy was to have one bed for each sick patient, the sheets were kept clean. In what has been suggested as "one of the earliest examples of such a therapeutic objective," patients were treated in order to be cured; the Hospital employed one surgeon. In the 16th century, it added an additional surgeon; as the Hospital became a training ground for doctors, there was, for the 17th and 18th centuries, a unique emphasis on using a more hands-on learning approach.
Another service implemented by the Hospital was to care for pilgrims. They were offered free board in the pilgrimage halls, which were segregated by sex; when they left, pilgrims received vouchers for food and drink in Sienese territory as they continued their travels. Siena lies on the Via Francigena, the main pilgrimage road to Rome, the Hospital was founded to accommodate the pilgrims and other travelers who passed through by the canons of the Duomo. According to legend, the Hospital was founded in 898 by a cobbler named Sorore. However, the first known document mentioning it is a "deed of gift" from March 29, 1090; the first rector, was said to be appointed in 1200. To settle infighting between the clergy and laypeople over who held more authority, Pope Celestine III issued a papal bull in 1193 that declared the Hospital a lay organization independent of the Cathedral. In 1359, the Hospital acquired several new relics, including part of the Virgin Mary's girdle and her veil to stimulate pilgrim travel.
More relics were acquired under the Rector Giovanni Buzzichelli. Other relics owned by the Hospital included those of Sts Augustinus and Marcellinus, a nail from the cross of Christ. At the end of the 13th century, the Hospital sped up its physical expansion and internally began splitting up according to the different functions it held. In 1404 the Council of Siena took control of the rector nomination process and made it a city office. In the 1430s, the confraternity devoted to Saint Jerome moved into the rooms in the lower levels of the Hospital, which were directly accessible from the streets. Other confraternities active at this time include an older confraternity dedicated to Mary Most Holy, the brotherhood of Saint Michael the Archangel renamed the brotherhood of Saint Catherine of the Night, a confraternity founded by Andrea Gallerani, "active in good works" at the Hospital. During the 18th century, the Hospital became part of the university. In 1995, the Hospital opened up to the public as a museum.
At first, only the areas considered. As more areas were restored, access increased, it is still being restored. In the 1330s Santa Maria della Scala commissioned many important interior and exterior frescoes as well as several significant altar
Colle di Val d'Elsa
Colle di Val d'Elsa or Colle Val d'Elsa is a town and comune in the province of Siena, central Italy. It has a population of c. 21,600 As of June 2017. Its name means "Hill of Elsa Valley", where Elsa is the name of the river which crosses it and Valdelsa the name of the valley. Today, Colle di Val d'Elsa is internationally renowned for the production of crystal glassware and art produced in the industrial lower town; the area was settled by man from at least the 4th millennium BC, but first mentions of the city are from the 9th century AD. In 1269 it was the seat of a famous battle during the wars of Guelphs and Ghibellines and in 1479 it was besieged by Neapolitan troops. From the 14th century it was a possession of Florence and the Grand Duchy of Tuscany until the unification of Italy in 1860. In the 20th century it became an important industrial center. During World War II it was bombed by Allied aircraft; the oldest part of the town is the "colle alta", the higher part, with a well-preserved medieval center.
The town developed along the river from the 11th century onwards, building an artificial canal to power various industrial activities, such as wheat mills and paper factories. The city is famous as the birthplace of sculptor and architect Arnolfo di Cambio. A poet Isabella Cervoni was born here; the village is entered through the ancient and monumental Porta Nova and winds its long and narrow way in a sequence of fine 16th- and 17th-century noble houses to the Palazzo Campana, which marks the entry to the Castle, the oldest part of Colle. Here, the village is characterized by narrow paved lanes, 15th- and 16th-century noble houses and tower-houses, including the one where Arnolfo di Cambio was born. Bir Gandus, Western Sahara Media related to Colle di Val d'Elsa at Wikimedia Commons Official website Catholic Encyclopedia article
Crucifixion of Jesus
The crucifixion of Jesus occurred in 1st-century Judea, most between AD 30 and 33. Jesus' crucifixion is described in the four canonical gospels, referred to in the New Testament epistles, attested to by other ancient sources, is established as a historical event confirmed by non-Christian sources, although there is no consensus among historians on the exact details. According to the canonical gospels, Jesus was arrested and tried by the Sanhedrin, sentenced by Pontius Pilate to be scourged, crucified by the Romans. Jesus was stripped of his clothing and offered wine mixed with myrrh or gall to drink after saying I am thirsty, he was hung between two convicted thieves and, according to the Gospel of Mark, died some six hours later. During this time, the soldiers affixed a sign to the top of the cross stating "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews" which, according to the Gospel of John, was written in three languages, they divided his garments among themselves and cast lots for his seamless robe, according to the Gospel of John.
According to the Gospel of John after Jesus' death, one soldier pierced his side with a spear to be certain that he had died blood and water gushed from the wound. The Bible describes seven statements that Jesus made while he was on the cross, as well as several supernatural events that occurred. Collectively referred to as the Passion, Jesus' suffering and redemptive death by crucifixion are the central aspects of Christian theology concerning the doctrines of salvation and atonement; the baptism of Jesus and his crucifixion are considered to be two certain facts about Jesus. James Dunn states that these "two facts in the life of Jesus command universal assent" and "rank so high on the'almost impossible to doubt or deny' scale of historical facts" that they are the starting points for the study of the historical Jesus. Bart Ehrman states that the crucifixion of Jesus on the orders of Pontius Pilate is the most certain element about him. John Dominic Crossan states that the crucifixion of Jesus is as certain as any historical fact can be.
Eddy and Boyd state that it is now "firmly established" that there is non-Christian confirmation of the crucifixion of Jesus. Craig Blomberg states that most scholars in the third quest for the historical Jesus consider the crucifixion indisputable. Christopher M. Tuckett states that, although the exact reasons for the death of Jesus are hard to determine, one of the indisputable facts about him is that he was crucified. While scholars agree on the historicity of the crucifixion, they differ on the reason and context for it. For example, both E. P. Sanders and Paula Fredriksen support the historicity of the crucifixion but contend that Jesus did not foretell his own crucifixion and that his prediction of the crucifixion is a "church creation". Geza Vermes views the crucifixion as a historical event but provides his own explanation and background for it. John P. Meier views the crucifixion of Jesus as historical fact and states that, based on the criterion of embarrassment, Christians would not have invented the painful death of their leader.
Meier states that a number of other criteria, e.g. the criterion of multiple attestation and the criterion of coherence help establish the crucifixion of Jesus as a historical event. Although all ancient sources relating to crucifixion are literary, the 1968 archeological discovery just northeast of Jerusalem of the body of a crucified man dated to the 1st century provided good confirmatory evidence that crucifixions occurred during the Roman period according to the manner in which the crucifixion of Jesus is described in the gospels; the crucified man was identified as Yehohanan ben Hagkol and died about 70 AD, around the time of the Jewish revolt against Rome. The analyses at the Hadassah Medical School estimated. Another relevant archaeological find, which dates to the 1st century AD, is an unidentified heel bone with a spike discovered in a Jerusalem gravesite, now held by the Israel Antiquities Authority and displayed in the Israel Museum; the earliest detailed accounts of the death of Jesus are contained in the four canonical gospels.
There are other, more implicit references in the New Testament epistles. In the synoptic gospels, Jesus predicts his death in three separate places. All four Gospels conclude with an extended narrative of Jesus' arrest, initial trial at the Sanhedrin and final trial at Pilate's court, where Jesus is flogged, condemned to death, is led to the place of crucifixion carrying his cross before Roman soldiers induce Simon of Cyrene to carry it, Jesus is crucified and resurrected from the dead, his death is described as other books of the New Testament. In each Gospel these five events in the life of Jesus are treated with more intense detail than any other portion of that Gospel's narrative. Scholars note that the reader receives an hour-by-hour account of what is happening. After arriving at Golgotha, Jesus was offered wine mixed with gall to drink. Matthew's and Mark's Gospels record, he was crucified and hung between two convicted thieves. According to some translations of the original Greek, the thieves may have been bandits or Jewish rebels.
According to Mark's Gospel, he endured the torment of crucifixion for some six hours from the third hour, at 9 am, until his death at the ninth hour, corresponding to about 3 pm. The soldiers affixed a sign above his head stating "Jesus of Nazareth, King of the Jews" which, according to the Gospel of John, was in three languages, divided his garments and cast l
Constantius I known as Constantius Chlorus, was a Caesar from 293 to 305 and a Roman Emperor from 305 to 306. He was the father of founder of the Constantinian dynasty; as Caesar, a junior emperor, he defeated the usurper Allectus in Britain and campaigned extensively along the Rhine frontier, defeating the Alamanni and Franks. Upon becoming Augustus in 305, Constantius launched a successful punitive campaign against the Picts beyond the Antonine Wall. However, Constantius died in Eboracum the following year, his death sparked the collapse of the tetrarchic system of government inaugurated by the Emperor Diocletian. Born in Dardania, Constantius was the son of Eutropius, whom the Historia Augusta claimed to be a nobleman from northern Dardania, in the province of Moesia Superior, Claudia, a niece of the emperors Claudius II and Quintillus. Modern historians suspect this maternal connection to be a genealogical fabrication created by his son Constantine I, that his family was of humble origins.
Constantius was a member of the Protectores Augusti Nostri under the emperor Aurelian and fought in the east against the secessionist Palmyrene Empire. While the claim that he had been made a dux under the emperor Probus is a fabrication, he attained the rank of tribunus within the army, during the reign of Carus he was raised to the position of Praeses, or governor, of the province of Dalmatia, it has been conjectured that he switched allegiances to support the claims of the future emperor Diocletian just before Diocletian defeated Carinus, the son of Carus, at the Battle of the Margus in July 285. In 286, Diocletian elevated a military colleague, Maximian, to the throne as co-emperor of the western provinces, while Diocletian took over the eastern provinces, beginning the process that would see the division of the Roman Empire into two halves, a Western and an Eastern portion. By 288, his period as governor now over, Constantius had been made Praetorian Prefect in the west under Maximian.
Throughout 287 and into 288, under the command of Maximian, was involved in a war against the Alamanni, carrying out attacks on the territory of the barbarian tribes across the Rhine and Danube rivers. To strengthen the ties between the emperor and his powerful military servant, in 289 Constantius divorced his wife Helena, married the emperor Maximian’s daughter, Theodora. By 293, conscious of the ambitions of his co-emperor for his new son-in-law, allowed Maximian to promote Constantius in a new power sharing arrangement known as the Tetrarchy. Diocletian divided the administration of the Roman Empire into two halves, a Western and an Eastern portion; each would be ruled by an Augustus, supported by a Caesar. Both Caesars had the right of succession. At Milan on March 1, 293, Constantius was formally appointed as Maximian’s Caesar, he adopted the names Flavius Valerius and was given command of Gaul and Hispania. Diocletian, the eastern Augustus, in order to keep the balance of power in the imperium, elevated Galerius as his Caesar on May 21, 293 at Philippopolis.
Constantius was the more senior of the two Caesars, on official documents he always took precedence, being mentioned before Galerius. Constantius’ capital was to be located at Augusta Treverorum. Constantius’ first task on becoming Caesar was to deal with the Roman usurper Carausius who had declared himself emperor in Britannia and northern Gaul in 286. In late 293, Constantius defeated the forces of Carausius in Gaul; this precipitated the assassination of Carausius by his rationalis Allectus, who assumed command of the British provinces until his death in 296. Constantius spent the next two years neutralising the threat of the Franks who were the allies of Allectus, as northern Gaul remained under the control of the British usurper until at least 295, he battled against the Alamanni, achieving some victories at the mouth of the Rhine in 295. Administrative concerns meant. Only when he felt ready did he assemble two invasion fleets with the intent of crossing the English Channel; the first was entrusted to Asclepiodotus, Constantius’ long-serving Praetorian prefect, who sailed from the mouth of the Seine, while the other, under the command of Constantius himself, was launched from his base at Bononia.
The fleet under Asclepiodotus landed near the Isle of Wight, his army encountered the forces of Allectus, resulting in the defeat and death of the usurper. Constantius in the meantime occupied London, saving the city from an attack by Frankish mercenaries who were now roaming the province without a paymaster. Constantius massacred all of them. Constantius remained in Britannia for a few months, replaced most of Allectus’ officers, the British provinces were at this time subdivided along the lines of Diocletian’s other administrative reforms of the Empire; the result was the division of Upper Britannia into Maxima Caesariensis and Britannia Prima, while Flavia Caesariensis and Britannia Secunda were carved out of Lower Britannia. He restored Hadrian’s Wall and its forts. In 298, Constantius fought in the Battle of Lingones against the Alamanni, he was relieved by his army after six hours and defeated the enemy. He defeated them again at Vindonissa. In 300, he fo
The Holy Lance known as the Lance of Longinus, the Spear of Destiny, or the Holy Spear is legendarily known as the lance that pierced the side of Jesus as he hung on the cross. The lance is mentioned in the Gospel of John, but not the Synoptic Gospels; the gospel states that the Romans planned to break Jesus' legs, a practice known as crurifragium, a method of hastening death during a crucifixion. Just before they did so, they realized that Jesus was dead and that there was no reason to break his legs. To make sure that he was dead, a Roman soldier stabbed him in the side. One of the soldiers pierced his side with a lance, there came out blood and water; the phenomenon of blood and water was considered a miracle by Origen. Catholics, while accepting the biological reality of blood and water as emanating from the pierced heart and body cavity of Christ acknowledge the allegorical interpretation: it represents one of the main key teachings/mysteries of the Church, one of the main themes of the Gospel of Matthew, the homoousian interpretation adopted by the First Council of Nicaea, that "Jesus Christ was both true God and true man."
The blood symbolizes the water his divinity. A ceremonial remembrance of this is done when a Catholic priest says Mass: The priest pours a small amount of water into the wine before the consecration, an act which acknowledges Christ's humanity and divinity and recalls the issuance of blood and water from Christ's side on the cross. Saint Faustina Kowalska, a Polish nun whose advocacy and writings led to the establishment of the Divine Mercy devotion acknowledged the miraculous nature of the blood and water, explaining that the blood is a symbol of the divine mercy of Christ, while the water is a symbol of His divine compassion and of baptismal waters. In most variants of the Orthodox Divine Liturgy, the priest lances the host with a liturgical spear before it is divided in honor of the Trinity, the Theotokos, various other remembrances; the deacon recites the relevant passage from the Gospel of John, along with sections of the Acts of the Apostles dealing with commemoration of the saints. Most of these pieces, set aside, become the antidoron to be distributed after the liturgy, a relic of the ancient agape of apostolic times, considered to be blessed but not consecrated or sanctified in the Western understanding.
The main piece becomes The Lamb, the host, consecrated on the altar and distributed to the faithful for Holy Communion. The name of the soldier who pierced Christ's side with a lonchē is not given in the Gospel of John, but in the oldest known references to the legend, the apocryphal Gospel of Nicodemus appended to late manuscripts of the 4th century Acts of Pilate, the soldier is identified as a centurion and called Longinus. A form of the name Longinus occurs on a miniature in the Rabula Gospels, illuminated by one Rabulas in the year 586. In the miniature, the name LOGINOS is written in Greek characters above the head of the soldier, thrusting his lance into Christ's side; this is one of the earliest records of the name, if the inscription is not a addition. There have been four major relics that are claimed to be the Holy Lance or parts of it; the Holy Lance in Rome is preserved beneath the dome of Saint Peter's Basilica, although the Catholic Church makes no claim as to its authenticity.
The first historical reference to the lance was made by the pilgrim Antoninus of Piacenza in his descriptions of the holy places of Jerusalem, writing that he saw in the Basilica of Mount Zion "the crown of thorns with which Our Lord was crowned and the lance with which He was struck in the side". A mention of the lance occurs in the so-called Breviarius at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre; the presence in Jerusalem of the relic is attested by Cassiodorus as well as by Gregory of Tours, who had not been to Jerusalem. In 615, Jerusalem and its relics were captured by the Persian forces of King Khosrau II. According to the Chronicon Paschale, the point of the lance, broken off, was given in the same year to Nicetas, who took it to Constantinople and deposited it in the church of Hagia Sophia, to the Church of the Virgin of the Pharos; this point of the lance, now set in an icon, was acquired by the Latin Emperor Baldwin II of Constantinople, who sold it to Louis IX of France. The point of the lance was enshrined with the crown of thorns in the Sainte Chapelle in Paris.
During the French Revolution these relics were removed to the Bibliothèque Nationale but the point subsequently disappeared. As for the larger portion of the lance, Arculpus claimed he saw it at the Church of the Holy Sepulchre around 670 in Jerusalem, but there is otherwise no mention of it after the sack in 615; some claim that the larger relic had been conveyed to Constantinople in the 8th century at the same time as the Crown of Thorns. At any rate, its presence at Constantinople seems to be attested by various pilgrims Russians, though it was deposited in various churches in succession, it seems possible to trace it and distinguish it from the relic of the point. Sir John Mandeville declared in 1357 that he had seen the blade of the Holy Lance both at Paris and at Constantinople, that the latter was a much larger relic than the former.
Christians are people who follow or adhere to Christianity, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ. The words Christ and Christian derive from the Koine Greek title Christós, a translation of the Biblical Hebrew term mashiach. While there are diverse interpretations of Christianity which sometimes conflict, they are united in believing that Jesus has a unique significance; the term "Christian" is used as an adjective to describe anything associated with Christianity, or in a proverbial sense "all, noble, good, Christ-like."According to a 2011 Pew Research Center survey, there were 2.2 billion Christians around the world in 2010, up from about 600 million in 1910. By 2050, the Christian population is expected to exceed 3 billion. According to a 2012 Pew Research Center survey Christianity will remain the world's largest religion in 2050, if current trends continue. Today, about 37% of all Christians live in the Americas, about 26% live in Europe, 24% live in sub-Saharan Africa, about 13% live in Asia and the Pacific, 1% live in the Middle East and North Africa.
About half of all Christians worldwide are Catholic. Orthodox communions comprise 12% of the world's Christians. Other Christian groups make up the remainder. Christians make up the majority of the population in territories. 280 million Christians live as a minority. Christians have made noted contributions to a range of fields, including the sciences, politics and business. According to 100 Years of Nobel Prizes, a review of Nobel prizes awarded between 1901 and 2000 reveals that of Nobel Prizes laureates identified Christianity in its various forms as their religious preference; the Greek word Χριστιανός, meaning "follower of Christ", comes from Χριστός, meaning "anointed one", with an adjectival ending borrowed from Latin to denote adhering to, or belonging to, as in slave ownership. In the Greek Septuagint, christos was used to translate the Hebrew מָשִׁיחַ, meaning " anointed." In other European languages, equivalent words to Christian are derived from the Greek, such as Chrétien in French and Cristiano in Spanish.
The abbreviations Xian and Xtian have been used since at least the 17th century: Oxford English Dictionary shows a 1634 use of Xtianity and Xian is seen in a 1634-38 diary. The word Xmas uses a similar contraction; the first recorded use of the term is in the New Testament, in Acts 11:26, after Barnabas brought Saul to Antioch where they taught the disciples for about a year, the text says: " the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch." The second mention of the term follows in Acts 26:28, where Herod Agrippa II replied to Paul the Apostle, "Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian." The third and final New Testament reference to the term is in 1 Peter 4:16, which exhorts believers: "Yet if as a Christian, let him not be ashamed. The city of Antioch, where someone gave them the name Christians, had a reputation for coming up with such nicknames; however Peter's apparent endorsement of the term led to its being preferred over "Nazarenes" and the term Christianoi from 1 Peter becomes the standard term in the Early Church Fathers from Ignatius and Polycarp onwards.
The earliest occurrences of the term in non-Christian literature include Josephus, referring to "the tribe of Christians, so named from him. In the Annals he relates that "by vulgar appellation called Christians" and identifies Christians as Nero's scapegoats for the Great Fire of Rome. Another term for Christians which appears in the New Testament is "Nazarenes". Jesus is named as a Nazarene in Math 2:23, while Saul-Paul is said to be Nazarene in Acts 24:5; the latter verse makes it clear that Nazarene referred to the name of a sect or heresy, as well as the town called Nazareth. The term Nazarene was used by the Jewish lawyer Tertullus which records that "the Jews call us Nazarenes." While around 331 AD Eusebius records that Christ was called a Nazoraean from the name Nazareth, that in earlier centuries "Christians" were once called "Nazarenes". The Hebrew equivalent of "Nazarenes", occurs in the Babylonian Talmud, is still the modern Israeli Hebrew term for Christian. A wide range of beliefs and practices are found across the world among those who call themselves Christian.
Denominations and sects disagree on a common definition of "Christianity". For example, Timothy Beal notes the disparity of beliefs among those who identify as Christians in the United States as follows: Although all of them have their historical roots in Christian theology and tradition, although most would identify themselves as Christian, many would not identify others within the larger category as Christian. Most Baptists and fundamentalists, for example, would not acknowledge Mormonism or Christian Science as Christian. In fact, the nearly 77 percent of Americans who self-identify as Christian are a diverse pluribus of Christianities that are far from any collective unity. Linda Woodhead attempts to provide a common belief thread for Christians by noting that "Whatever else they might disagree about, Christians are at least united