Friday, September 7, 2007


Saint’s feet are not quite as interesting as their hands but they still play an important role in the symbolic language. There are some similarities. Once again there may be evidence of the stigmata or of the resurrection on them. It can also be interesting to see on what the feet are standing. Are they firmly panted on the ground? Here is a saint confident in the faith. Are they floating on clouds? It may be a vision or the Assumption or the Ascension, or maybe an angel. Are they “head over heals”? Perhaps this is a moment of defeat of some agent of evil or a moment of conversion (such as Paul getting knocked off his high horse.)

But most telling are articles found under the feat of a saint. These are signs of things or evils overcome in life. Thus is Saint George seen thrusting a sword into a dragon over which he stands. The dragon symbolizes the evil he conquered. Saint Michael likewise is seen thrusting though a dragon which he crushes under his feet.

Notice statues of Mary that depict her as the woman in Revelation 14. She is standing on a snake which represents the Devil whom she overcame in her own life by the merits of her Son who would destroy the power of the Enemy forever.

In addition to the wounds of the crucifixion seen on his feet, statues of the risen Christ often have implements of his crucifixion placed beneath His feet. There might be the nails, the crown of thorns, or even the instrument used to pull the nails out of His body that they might take Him off of the cross.

So that concludes a general overview of depictions of holy personages from the crown of their heads to the soles of their feet. Next week we will take a look at some specific people.


Anonymous said...

Happy B-day, Mary! What I find interesting is that Mary's feet are always showingin her apparitions & statues. I have heard that she provides us this sign to know it is truly her before us. Thank you, Mary!!

uncle jim said...

Fr V,
Thanks for doing all the footwork for us. Glad you're so soled out.