Erich Lessing

Peter the miracle-worker raises from the dead a young man named Theophilus, son of the prefect of Antioch, in this 15th-century fresco by Masaccio from the Brancacci Chapel, in Florence. As Jesus’ successor, Peter had similar miracle-performing abilities. In the Book of Acts, he heals a lame man and a paralyzed man (Acts 3:7, 9:34). Even his shadow has healing properties; in Acts, the sick lie on cots and mats in public places with hopes that “Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them” (Acts 5:15). The story of the resurrection of Theophilus’s son comes from the Golden Legend, a medieval collection of apocryphal tales involving biblical characters and other saints.