Monday, November 12, 2012

Aculco: The Crosses

As followers of this blog know, we have a special interest in Mexican crosses—especially the carved stone church crosses.
For our final post on Aculco we look at several local examples, some dating back to early colonial times:
Aculco: gable cross
The cross perched atop the church gable is plainly carved, with button finials and an INRI plaque. 

Aculco: wall cross

This coffee colored cross, cut from textured tufa, is embedded at the foot of the church tower. 
Dated 1708,  it is sparely carved with a recessed, cross-within-a-cross motif, flared finials and capped by an unusual, star shaped INRI plaque.
Aculco: posa cross

This simple little cross is housed in a niche cut into an outlying posa, or processional chapel. Although otherwise without other motifs, it is still headed by an ornamental INRI scroll.
Aculco: keystone cross
Supported by angels on clouds, this plain cross is carved into the keystone of the arched west doorway of the church. What may be a tiny, mask like Face of Christ is carved at the crossing.
Aculco: Nenthé atrium cross

Now located in the churchyard of El Santuario del Señor de Nenthé, a barrio of Aculco, this classic atrial cross is the oldest and most elaborately carved of the local crosses and probably dates to the 16th century.  
Numerous Passion symbols include the Cockerel and Column, stylized Wounds, and a Skull and Bones at the foot. What may be an eroded Face of Christ occupies the axis.
text © 2012 Richard D Perry. photography by Richard Perry and Niccolo Brooker

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