John are by Correggio, and the arabesques on the vault of the nave by Anselmi.
Above this comes a row of circular shields, adorned with intricate arabesques, while bands and wreaths of lilies are everywhere scupltured on the windows, balconies, tambours and cornices, adding lightness to the fabric. The whole is raised on a platform 7 ft.
From the early part of the 8th century they began to ornament it with dust of gold or mother-of-pearl, and throughout the Heian epoch (9th to 12th century) they added pictorial designs, though of a formal character, the chief motives being floral subjects, arabesques and scrolls.
The plumage of gorgeously-hued birds, the blossoms of flowers (especially the hydrangea), the folds of thick brocade, microscopic diapers and arabesques, are built up with tiny fragments of iridescent shell, in combination with silver-foil, goldlacquer and colored bone, the whole producing a rich and sparkling effect.
The thin clumsily-shaped vases of the Kaji school, with their uniformly distributed decoration of diapers, scrolls and arabesques in comparatively dull colors, ceased altogether to be produced, their place being taken by graceful specimens, technically flawless, and carrying designs not only free from stiffness, but also executed in colors at once rich and soft.
The most noteworthy pieces are a crater richly ornamented with arabesques and figures of children, a platter with a representation of Minerva, another with one of the boy Hercules and another with one of Cybele.
The decoration consists, as a rule, of stiff, conventional foliage, Arabic inscriptions, and geometrical patterns wrought into arabesques of almost incredible intricacy and ingenuity.
They are adorned by varieties of foliage, &c.; about each arch there is a large square of arabesques; and over the pillars is another square of exquisite filigree work.
The art of these countries is mainly geometrical, and allows only of monograms crowned with laurels, of peacocks, of animals gambolling amid foliage, of fruit and flowers, of crosses which are either svastikas of Hindu and Mycenaean type, or so lost in enveloping arabesques as to be merely decorative.
The pillars, architraves, ceilings, panels, and almost every available part of the structure, are covered with arabesques and sculptured figures of dragons, lions, tigers, birds, flowers, and even pictorial compositions with landscapes and figures, deeply carved in solid or open workthe wood sometimes plain, sometimes overlaid with pigment and gilding, as in the panelled ceiling of the chapel of Iyeyasu in Tokyo.
The roof and walls are covered with arabesques, and the legend El-Mulk Lillah, " the kingdom is God's," is repeated again and again.