Under threat from terrorism, Coptic culture remains eternally powerful

By Jonathan Jones

The explosion in Cairo that killed 25 Coptic Christians shows the hostility to this antique faith. But it might just have helped invent popular culture

The Coptic church is Egypt’s oldest living religion. Its unique artistic tradition stretches right back into antiquity and stands as a rebuke to the murderers who killed 25 worshippers in a chapel next to Cairo’s main cathedral on 11 December.

For the legacy of Coptic art proves that people of this faith are in a direct line from the ancient Egyptians themselves and to protect their culture, beliefs and lives is to defend the very identity of Egypt.

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