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Archaeology Magazine

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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1,500-Year-Old Painting Depicting Jesus Found in Negev Desert

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Israel Shivta paintingHAIFA, ISRAEL—According to a Live Science report, art historian Emma Maayan-Fanar of the University of Haifa has found a heavily eroded painting depicting Jesus Christ at his baptism in the Jordan River amid the ruins of a 1,500-year-old church at the site of the ancient city of Shivta, which is located in the Negev Desert. The painting was located on a fragment of ceiling in the baptistery, the area of the church where the rite of admission to the Christian faith was performed. The image is thought to be one of the oldest representations of Jesus Christ to have been found in Israel. To read about a hat bearing a depiction of Jesus that was found in a very different part of the world, go to “Mongol Fashion Statement.”

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