Fred Anderegg

“This must be a Hebrew child” (Exodus 2:6), Pharaoh’s daughter (center) proclaims when, bathing in the Nile, she finds the infant Moses hidden among the reeds. Pitying the child, Pharaoh’s daughter agrees when his sister Miriam (second from left) offers to find a Hebrew woman to suckle the baby. Miriam passes the baby back to his actual mother, Jochebed, at left.

Painted in tempera on dry plaster smoothed over mudbrick walls, this scene appears beside the Torah niche of the third-century C.E. Dura-Europos synagogue, excavated in modern Syria. None of the critical paintings from Dura—which form the earliest extant cycle of Bible scenes—appears in Great Women of the Bible, and neither Miriam nor Jochebed makes Sölle’s roster of the 25 greatest.