Doubting Thomas

14th century
Pomposa Abbey, Italy

This fresco presents the episode in John 20:24-29. St. Thomas is the beardless youth reaching toward the triangular tear in Jesus' tunic. What could be a highly emotional scene is stylized by the geometric shape of the tear and its synecdochic reference to the wound. At the same time the artist universalizes the moment by placing Jesus at the center of a stage-like structure with his hands raised as if to pronounce his closing moral, "Blessed are they that have not seen, and have believed" (John 20:29).

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Photographed at the abbey by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.