Statues of Four Evangelists (Basilica of Agony)

By the Editors of the Madain Project

The facade of the church is supported by a row of Corinthian columns. Atop each column sits statues of the Four Evangelists. First is Mark. Second, Luke holds a quote from Luke 22:43-44. Followed by Matthew holding Matthew 26:42b. The final statue is of John.


List of Statues


First is Mark The Evengelist, traditionally ascribed author of the Gospel of Mark. Mark is said to have founded the Church of Alexandria, one of the most important episcopal sees of early Christianity. Mark was a follower of Peter and so an "apostolic man".


Second, Luke holds a quote from Luke 22:43-44 “…factus in agonia prolixius orabat et factus est sudor eius sicut guttae sanguinis decurrentis in terram" or translated from the Vulgate, "And being in agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground". Early Church Fathers ascribed to him authorship of both the Gospel of Luke and the Acts of the Apostles, which would mean Luke contributed over a quarter of the text of the New Testament, more than any other author.


Matthew holding Matthew 26:42b "Pater mi, si non potest hic calix transire nisi bibam illum, fiat voluntas tua" or translated “My Father, if this cup cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done". Although not named within the text it self, the Gospel of Matthew is ascribed to him. The superscription "according to Matthew" was added some time in the second century. The tradition that the author was the disciple Matthew begins with the early Christian bishop Papias of Hierapolis (c. 100–140 CE), who is cited by the Church historian Eusebius (260–340 CE).


The final statue is of John the Evangelist who is traditionally ascribed as the author of the Gospel of John. Christians have traditionally identified him with John the Apostle, John of Patmos, or John the Presbyter, although this has been disputed by modern scholars.

Basilica of Agony


Facade of the Church of All Nations or Basilica of Agony supported by a row of Corinthian columns with evangalists' statues atop each column. The columns and statues are set below a modern mosaic depicting Jesus Christ as mediator between God and man, designed by Giulio Bargellini. On the summit of the façade stand two stags on either side of a cross.

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