RAVENNA PARALLEL. A frequent motif of early Christian and Byzantine art, Jesus’s baptism appears also in the sixth-century Arian Baptistery in Ravenna, Italy. This mosaic decorating the center of the dome shows Jesus as youthful and beardless, descended waist deep into water. John the Baptist appears larger on the right. The personification of the Jordan River is also present, shown on the left as an old man holding a marsh reed. The dove descending on Jesus represents the Holy Spirit. Similar scenes could also include angels. The poor state of preservation at Shivta makes it impossible to determine whether these additional figures were once part of the baptism scene there.