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Three martyrs faces finally discovered 400 years after their deaths


These are the faces of the “Three Kosice Martyrs.” They were Catholic missionaries who were brutally killed during a Protestant upheaval in 1619 in the Kingdom of Hungary. They were canonized by John Paul II in 1995. 

In collaboration with the archdiocese of Košice and Czech archaeologist Jiři Šindelař, Moraes was hired to do the facial reconstruction of these martyrs. It is to mark the 400th anniversary since their deaths. 

Cicero Moraes is a renowned Brazilian 3D-designer. In the past he has done the facial reconstruction of saints such as St. Anthony of Padua.

CICERO MORAES
Facial reconstruction expert, 3D Design
“Archaeologist Jiři Šindelař and his team produced a series of photographs around the skulls of these martyrs. These photographs were sent to a computer program which converted them into 3D objects corresponding to the volume of the skull. With this 3D skull I begun to process the facial reconstruction.”

Cicero Moraes used pins as markers and modelled the mains muscles around the martyrs' faces to help figure out their main facial features. 

This technique is useful in criminal investigations to help in the recognition of victims. Moraes believes it can be also helpful to know what the saints looked like. 

CICERO MORAES
Facial reconstruction expert, 3D Design
“The humanization of the relics can be beneficial. However, as we all know the face of the saints is only a small detail what really matters is the message they left for us.”

According to Cicero, scientifically speaking these faces are 90 percent to reality. The only facial feature that is difficult to obtain is the color of hair and eyes, as this requires special DNA analysis.  

So far Cicero has facially reconstructed the faces of 14 Catholic saints and two blesseds. He hopes to continue putting the name of a saint to his or her face.