Garo Nalbandian

St. John the Baptist is shown with wings, symbolizing his role as a messenger, in an icon painted in the 18th century, as were many in the monastery’s collection. Wearing a rough sheepskin garment and leather belt, as described in Matthew 3:4, the Forerunner holds a scroll that reads in Greek: “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 3:2). As in many contemporaneous portraits of St. John, the head of the saint is shown on a dish in a corner of the painting to depict his eventual fate at the hands of King Herod Antipas and his dancing stepdaughter, Salome (Matthew 14:1–12).