Daniel in the Lions’ Den

Daniel and lion's mosaic

Daniel in the Lions’ Den. Detail of a mosaic from the Hosios Loukas monastery, Voiotia, Greece, early 11th century.

This 11th-century mosaic adorns the interior of the Hosios Loukas monastery near Delphi, Greece, which is on the UNESCO list of world heritage sites. The church design, from the golden age of Byzantine art, features a large dome resting on a drum with 16 windows. The dome is supported on three sides by groin-vaulted bays supported on a cross-in-square plan. The mosaicist portrays Daniel in a vulnerable posture with arms raised, palms up, and eyes serenely focused on an unseen point. The emaciated lions gently lick at the feet of Daniel.