St. Vitus

West Portal, St. Vitus Church
San Vito lo Capo, Sicily

In addition to the palm branch signifying martyrdom, the statue features two of St. Vitus's specific attributes, a hand cross and a pair of dogs. The sign of the cross protected him when he was exposed to the lions in Rome's arena, and the dogs represent his successful intercessions for victims of dog bites. The book in his left hand may be simply iconographic boilerplate, but in his vita he does quote the scriptures quite often.

As usual Vitus is portrayed with curly and plentiful hair, and for once he looks less like a youth and more like the seven-year-old that his vita says he was.

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