Jesus Cures the Mute Who Was Possessed

12th - 13th century
Cathedral of the Assumption, Monreale, Sicily

The inscription above the image is from Matthew 9:32-33, OBTULERUNT AD EUM HOMINEM MUTUM DEMONIUM HABENTEM ET EIECTO DEMONE LOCUTUS EST MUTUS, "they brought him a dumb man possessed with a devil. And after the devil was cast out, the dumb man spoke."

The chains on the man's legs are not in Matthew 9, but they help characterize him as possessed. Chains are mentioned as binding possessed individuals in Mark 5:3,4 and Luke 8:29.

The building in the background is the "house of the ruler" that Jesus has just left (9:23). The two men whispering on the right are most likely the Pharisees objecting that "by the prince of devils he casteth out devils" (9:34).

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See more images, with commentaries, about Jesus' cures of demoniacs.

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