The Virgin Mary with St. Nicholas of Bari

Late 17th century
The Pantheon, Rome

The upper half of this painting records the visit of Christ and the Virgin Mary to St. Nicholas in prison. For slapping an Arian heretic at the Council of Nicea, he had been punished with imprisonment and the loss of his omophorion, the white, scarf-like vestment with the crosses that Orthodox bishops wear as a symbol of their authority. Jesus has brought Nicholas a book, and Mary is restoring the omophorion to him. In the legend, they then release him from prison.

In the lower half, St. Nicholas is wearing his omophorion and gesturing to the three murdered boys whom he has recalled to life.

Read more about St. Nicholas.

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