Saints Hermagoras and Fortunatus

1872
Ljubljana Cathedral

These statues of the patron saints of Aquileia are on the exterior of St. Nicholas Cathedral in Ljubljana, which was part of the Archdiocese of Aquileia from 811 to 1461. The statues outfit each saint according to his hierarchical role: Hermagoras as a bishop with mitre, crozier, and chasuble; Fortunatus in a deacon's dalmatic. A few extra touches may be intended to remind one that Fortunatus was an archdeacon: the dalmatic is especially elaborate, with a picture panel at the breast (similar to one seen in his painting at Udine Cathedral), and there is a curious cord at the shoulders with tasseled ends. This is not a stole, which deacons wear under the dalmatic.

Although Hermagoras was martyred at the same time as his archdeacon and in the same manner, only Fortunatus is pictured with a sword and palm branch.

In this and their other images neither saint has attributes that would distinguish him from other martyred bishops and deacons. What makes them identifiable is that they are almost always portrayed together – one martyred bishop with one martyred deacon.

More of Saints Hermagoras and Fortunatus

Photographed at the cathedral by Richard Stracke, shared under Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license.