Filippino Lippi, St. Philip at the Temple of Mars

Strozzi Chapel, Santa Maria Novella, Florence

The creature sitting on the circle on the floor is the dragon whose breath has been sickening the people of "Scythia," which the legends seem to assume is a city rather than a region. On the left a woman holds her nose against the stench. On the right the pagan priest reacts in horror at the death of his son (the blond boy with the blue mantle and red hose). In the center St. Philip declares, "Believe ye me and break this idol and set in his place the cross of Jesu Christ and after, worship ye it, and they that be here dead shall revive, and all the sick people shall be made whole" (Golden Legend #65). In the legend, the people do just that and all are cured and converted to "the faith of Jesu Christ."

View this image in full resolution.
Read more about St. Philip.

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