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St. Anthony of Padua

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Saint_Anthony_of_Padua#/media/File:St._Anthony_-_facial_reconstruction_-_for_mobile_and_newspaper.jpg
Facial Reconstruction of St. Anthony from His Skull

I had never seen this image of St. Anthony before and was quite surprised when I did.

In 1981, St. Pope John Paul II gave permission for the mortal remains of St. Anthony to be exhumed and studied in order to be public venerated. Likely this reconstruction is based on measurements taken during that study.

St. Anthony was 5 ft. 6 in. (somewhat taller than the average male of the day) and had somewhat enlarged knees and feet (from walking and kneeling?). Scientists estimate he was about 39 years old when he died.  As you may know, during a study of the body undertaken by the Franciscans under St. Boneventure in 1263, his incorrupt tongue was removed and his jaw and a forearm in later years. These had been on public display for veneration.

Neither of our two images of Anthony look much like the facial reconstruction, but icons are only windows to prayer, not necessarily representations of photographic accuracy.

Anthony was a great preacher and tireless evangelist who had a gift for communicating the gospel in word and work.

 

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