Archaeologists and Art Restorers Find Oldest Paintings of Apostles

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ROME (REUTERS).- Archaeologists and art restorers using new laser technology have discovered what they believe are the oldest paintings of the faces of Jesus Christ’s apostles. The images in a branch of the catacombs of St Tecla near St Paul’s Basilica, just outside the walls of ancient Rome, were painted at the end of the 4th century or the start of the 5th century. Archaeologists believe these images may have been among those that most influenced later artists’ depictions of the faces of Christ’s most important early followers. “These are the first images that we know of the faces of these four apostles,” said Professor Fabrizio Bisconti, the head of archaeology for Rome’s numerous catacombs, which are owned and maintained by the Vatican. The frescoes were known but their details came to light during