8.0 th…Post…St.Thomas
Posted on: October 23rd, 2011 by dan 164 Comments

THOMAS, that is St. Thomas the APOSTLE.  What do we know of  historical  THOMAS?  Well we really don’t know much more about him than we did abouJudas. He was probably born in Galilee hence he was a Galilean.  How old was he, we don’t know, although he died in the early AD 50s.  His ministry lasted about 15 to 20 years. And we  do know that he sat at the last supper table with Christ.  He was one of the twelve. Although he was not there that Easter Sunday when Christ arose from the dead. When the other apostles who witnessed the arising of Christ told Thomas what had happened he declined to believe.  Thomas told his fellow disciples that he would only believe what they said if he could  place his fingers into the nail wounds of Christ.

Pictures by Dan Breslin

Eight days later upon the second appearance of Christ, while  in the presence of  Christ,  Thomas believed.  At this time Christ permitted Thomas to put his fingers into the nail wounds.  Thomas thenceforth was known as “Doubting Thomas”.

 Thomas’ ministry took him as far as Madras, India.  There on the Malabar Coast he established a Christian community, still existing today, known as the “Christians of St. Thomas”.

Thomas is believed to have suffered martyrdom  in  Syriac Mazdal, India by the order of King Misdai after having fallen into disfavor.


What did Leonardo know of Thomas.  Practically nothing but apocryphal information.  We can be certain that he discussed Thomas’ personality with his regular contacts.  Not that they knew anything in particular but to just get their thoughts.    He needed some feedback.   He must have believed Thomas to be  about 15 or 20 years older than Jesus.  That would have made Thomas about 50 years of age at the time of the last supper.   With his ministry lasting about 15 to 20 years,  we can calculate his age at time of death to be about 70 years.

I having examined Leonardo’s  profile of Thomas, I found a bushy haired man  with a heavy beard, short , pointed and trimmed.  His hand raised  with a rigid  index finger, his head thrust forward, almost demanding a fuller response to what Jesus must have just said.  I suppose that these facts are part of the personality of a DOUBTING THOMAS, they want proof.  Leonardo painted him as just such a person.


For Thomas Eakins, this was an easy task.  He needed only to duplicate what Leonardo gave to him.  With Eakins’ skill, duplicating Thomas was a cakewalk.  Under magnification I can’t see any difference between the two profiles.  There is no difference!  Thomas Eakins did a great job.


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COPYRIGHT NOTICE:  To avoid any possible copyright conflict we have been advised  by our legal department to forgo any content feeders  and make no direct link to social medias nor other web sites.  Our painting The Last Supper by Thomas Eakins might be the most important American painting of the 19th century. It is an AMERICAN  ICON.   All the material on this site is original and copyrighted  and we must take all possible precaution in protecting those rights.    Permission to make use of any part  of this website, The Last Supper.info, must first be approved and approval must be in writing  from our Legal Department.   © 2011-2012: DanBreslin

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