Garo Nalbandian

An icon preserved in the Monastery of the Cross in Jerusalem depicts Philip the evangelist baptizing “a eunuch, a minister of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians … [who] had come to Jerusalem to worship” (Acts 8:26–40). The scene appears in the lower right of the icon. Painted in 1770, the icon represents the sacred places of the Holy Land and their associated events in their topographical settings. The icon is oriented with east at the top and with Jerusalem, represented by the crucified Jesus, at the center. The Monastery of the Cross is prominently depicted in the center foreground. The site of the baptism scene is a valley southwest of the Old City of Jerusalem. This location fits the Ein Yael spring, which author-archaeologist Yehuda Rapuano suggests may be the site of the event.