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Caryatids Room
Roman art
Julio-Claudian Period
Late Antiquity
Gaul, Africa and Syria




Eros           MR 141
 
 
Sully room 17
 
 
 
Eros, identified as Cupid by the Romans,
was the god of love in Greek mythology.
 
He is shown as a winged child,
with his eyes sometimes covered.
 
He often carries a bow which he uses
to shoot arrows into the hearts
of gods and men.
 
This statue forms part of a series of images associating Eros with his mother, Aphrodite,
as she gazes at her reflection in a shield
that the god would have held here.

 Eros and Love in the Bible

The word rendered as ‘ love ' in the Greek Scriptures encapsulates four different terms. Eros designates the feeling of love that exists between the sexes.
It does not appear in the holy text, even if the idea is expressed (1 Corinthians 7:2-5).
Philia is the feeling of affection that unites friends (John 21:17, note),
whereas storgê designates the love felt by families. AR23

 Love, four different term, but not Eros

Agapê love appears much more often
(250 times) than the other terms.
 
It arose from the attachment to certain
principles that ruled out any idea
of personal interest.
 
God is the very personification of love. - 1 John 4:8
 
“By this all will know
that you are my disciples,
if you have love
among yourselves.”
 
John 13:35
 
This aspect of love guided by principles meant that the mind and deliberate will, which manifests as acts, came into play more often than impulse, without however excluding any notion of affection.

Agape, Love and not Charity

Although Plato, Socrates, Aristotle and other Classical Greeks often used the
word eros, they rarely made use of the word agapê. […]
 
Physical love could only contribute to happiness to the extent that it was
subject to control and not worship.
 
This perhaps explains why the biblical writers avoided the use of a term that their Greek-speaking readers would associate with one of the pagan gods.
 
“ I transcribe the Greek term agape as love and not as charity. This is the only liberty I have allowed myself in this work regarding the translation of the Bible of Jerusalem.
Nowadays, the term charity is all too frequently given a pejorative connotation to render what Paul wants to express by agape, which means the love that comes from God. “ 
 
Frédéric Lenoir, Le Christ philosophe [Christ the Philosopher]
 
The superiority of this love was to be the characteristic of true Christians. “By this all will know that you are my disciples, if you have love (agapê) among yourselves.” - John 13:35.
 
 
 

 





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