But how the remains were in Padua, and not in Constantinople? The manuscript mentions that the remains of St. Luke, together with the relics of St. Matthias, were removed from Constantinople in the times of the Emperor Julian the Apostate (361-363 AD); other sources suggest the 8th century iconoclast persecution as probable date for the transfer: actually historians are still evaluating the plausibility of such hypotheses.

The Benedictine monks, who had established themselves in Padua in the Abbey of St. Justina before 1000 AD, started to venerate the remains of the Evangelist with considerable care; around the year 1313 they built a marble sarcophagus within which to place the remains encased in lead. Soon afterwards, in 1354, Emperor Charles IV of Luxemburg, king of Bohemia, acquired the skull, which ended up in the cathedral of St. Vitus in Prague, then capital city of the Empire: it has been conserved there till the present day. In Padua’s abbey, various literary texts were composed – some for liturgical use – intended to strengthen faith in the authenticity of the relics and to divulge the fame of St. Luke. In 1436, the painter Giovanni Storlato was commissioned to portray a series of scenes that relate the life of the saint, the transfer of the relics from the East, and their resurfacing in Padua on the walls of the chapel dedicated to St. Luke.