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Baptism in Milan

After his conversion, Augustine is ready for baptism. This picture depicts the baptism itself, which took place in Milan on Easter Sunday, in the year 387. Notice that for the first time, Augustine himself has a halo, as does Bishop Ambrose who is baptizing him.   Two of the other figures have halos, one is Monica, and the other is probably his friend Alypius.  In fact, Alypius experienced a similar conversion, and later became a bishop and a saint.  It is also interesting how the pillars line up with the figures in the picture. There are eight pillars, one for each of the eight standing figures. 

If you go to Milan, be sure to visit the impressive and beautiful cathedral there. Archaeologists have done an excavation below the ground level and have discovered an ancient church from Augustine's time, and they have also excavated the octagonal baptismal font. This was probably the exact spot where Augustine was baptized. 

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Images are taken from: The Web Gallery of Art.  Quotations from St. Augustine's Confessions, translated by Maria Boulding, O.S.B., (Hyde Park, New York: New City Press) 1997.  Author: John Immerwahr, Update: March 18, 2008.