restricted access The Two Women in the Mosaic of Santa Pudenziana

The significance of the two women portrayed in the apsidal mosaic of Santa Pudenziana in Rome is not solved by transferring to them the titles attached to similar figures in the later mosaic of Santa Sabina. If the mosaicist of Santa Sabina correctly interpreted them as Ecclesia ex circumcisione and Ecclesia ex gentibus, the basis of his interpretation must be established in terms of the mosaic he is thought to be quoting and labelling. The mosaic of Santa Pudenziana establishes their meaning by employing Jerome's interpretation of the vision of Ezekiel. These figures are rich in exegetical and apologetic significance and illustrate the complexity of the artistic idiom of Rome's greatest example of Theodosian classicism.