Tuscan craftsmen, Mosaic with Stories of the Baptist (sixth register)
- Tuscan craftsmen - Deodato Orlandi
- C. 1280-1305
- Baptistery of Saint John
- Specific location
- Interior, vault, sixth register from top, south, south-east, east, north-east, north sectors
- Polychrome tesserae of glass paste, gold
The sixth register of the mosaic of the vault is by Tuscan masters, from 1280-1305 around. The Stories of St. John the Baptist are depicted there: the evangelical story is divided into fifteen stories, for as many panels, defined by columns and entablatures, which arrange them counterclockwise in groups of three on five segments of the vault.
North segment: 1. Announcement of the birth of the Baptist to Zacharias; 2. Birth and naming of the Baptist; 3. The young St John in the desert.
Northeast segment: 4. Preaching in the desert; 5. Baptism of crowds; 6. St. John the Baptist points to Christ as the Lamb of God.
East segment: 7. Baptism of Christ; 8. St. John the Baptist reproaches Herod; 9. St. John the Baptist in prison.
Southeast corner:10. St. John the Baptist in prison sends the disciples to Christ; 11. The disciples of the Baptist ask Jesus if he is the Messiah; 12. Dance of Salome.
South wedge: 13. Beheading of the Baptist; 14. Banquet of Herod and presentation of the head of the Baptist; 15. Burial of the Baptist.
The mosaics celebrate the patron saint of the city and to whom the Baptistery is dedicated. For the Christian tradition, the Baptist is the last of the prophets and the first of the saints, the one who, after announcing the coming of Christ, was then the first to recognize him when he administered Baptism to him. The Baptist was born in the era of sin and died in that of grace, like those who entered this building to be baptized: he entered stained by Original Sin and left cleansed by Baptism.