Crucifixion and Annunciation
This apse is from a Medieval church in Rabat, Malta, known as Abbatija tad-Dejr, which is an early Christian site consisting of four tunnelled burial chambers in the rock face with evidence of tombs and a chapel which emphasize the presence of Greek-rite monasticism in the early Post-Muslim period. It is said that the site remained in use to a period close to the Muslim conquest of the 9th century. This fresco was originally part of the decorations inside the rock cut chapel adjoining the Abbatija tad-Dejr Catacombs in Rabat and is one of the last works in the Siculo-Byzantinesque tradition. In the centre is Christ dead on the cross with the Madonna and Saint John on either side. At both extremities of the painting are the Archangel Gabriel and the Virgin Mary forming the Annunciation scene. The style shows an emerging Gothic sensibility in the noticeable S-curve of the crucified Christ.