The Graphic Signs in the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem

2nd International Conference, 21-23 June 2022


Estelle Ingrand-Varenne (,

Clément Dussart (  

On-site: Centre de Recherche Français de Jérusalem (Shimshon street 3) 



Online Link Zoom:

ID meeting: 896 2098 6239; Passcode: 987835

[Attention, the times indicated are those of Jerusalem, so 1 hour more than in Europe: CET+1]


Tuesday June 21st

9:00     Coffee

9:30     Welcome: Vincent Lemire (Head of the CRFJ)

10:00 Introduction: Estelle Ingrand-Varenne (CNRS CRFJ-CESCM) and Clément Dussart (CESCM, University of Poitiers)

10:30-12:30   1st session, moderator: Maria Villano (ERC GRAPH-EAST, CESCM)

  • “Towards a Periodisation of Graffiti between Antiquity and the Middle Ages” Carlo Tedeschi (Università degli Studi “G. d’Annunzio” Chieti Pescara)
  • “The Tree of Abraham in the Nativity Church and its epigraphic exegesis”  Estelle Ingrand-Varenne (CNRS CRFJ-CESCM)

Lunch at the CRFJ

14:30-18:00     2nd session, moderator: Sercan Saglam (ERC GRAPH-EAST, CESCM)

  • “Scratch, Incise, Engrave: Technical Study of the Lapidary Graffiti of the Nativity” Thierry Grégor (CESCM, University of Poitiers)
  • “The discovery and the conservation of Graffiti on the columns of the Church of the Nativity”  Marcello Piacenti (Piacenti SpA Centro Restauri

 Coffee Break

  • “Apposer son emblème. La mise en signe des espaces sacrés au Moyen Âge. L’exemple de l’église de la Nativité de Bethléem en perspective”  Laurent Hablot (EPHE, SAPRAT) [visio]


 Wednesday June 22nd

 9:00   Coffee

9:30-12:00    3rd session, moderator: Gil Fishhof (University of Haifa)

  • “Portraits, graffiti, and tattoos: pilgrims and the appropriation of Bethlehem’s sanctity” Michele Bacci (Freiburg University)
  • “Quotation and Glorification: Bethlehem’s Conciliar Texts in Local Context” Megan Boomer (Columbia University)

Lunch at the CRFJ

13:00   Departure to the Nativity Church, Bethlehem

14:00-17:00  Epigraphic tour of the basilica, and the cave of St. Jerome and the chapel of St. Joseph

18:00    Return to Jerusalem


Thursday June 23rd

9:00   Coffee

9h30-12:30    4th session, moderator: Yana Tchekhanovets (Ben-Gurion University of the Neguev)

  • “The Armenian Inscriptions and Graffiti of the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem”  Khachik A. Harutyunyan (Scientific Research Center of the Historical and Cultural Heritage, Matenadaran)
  • “The Arabic inscriptions of the Basilica of the Nativity: inventory and research perspectives”  Anna Lagaron-Khalifa (ERC Horn-East, Iremam Aix-Marseille Université) [visio
  • “Recent discoveries of Latin graffiti and signs in the Nativity Church: new contributions to the history of a holy place and to pilgrimage practices (9th-16th )”  Clément Dussart (CESCM, University of Poitiers)

Lunch at the CRFJ

13:45   Departure to the Custody

14:00-16:00    Visit of the Treasure of Bethlehem at the Custody of the Holy Land, with fr. Stéphane Milovitch (ofm, Director of the Cultural Heritage Office)


18:00    Public Conference of Michele Bacci at the École biblique et archéologique française: “The Nativity Church in Bethlehem: New Approaches and Discoveries”


Closing Dinner




Cite this blog post
Estelle Ingrand-Varenne (2022, May 25). The Graphic Signs in the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. ERC GRAPH-EAST. Retrieved April 23, 2024, from

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