Many surviving early Byzantine panel paintings (6th–8th c.)1 preserve indications of frames once set around their rims, which are well attested by numerous icons from the collection of St Catherine’s monastery on Mt Sinai, including the three famous panels depicting Christ Pantocrator, Theotokos enthroned with warrior saints, and St Peter.2 Very few extant images are still in their original state since the wooden bands used to circumscribe the panels subsequently suffered breakage and dispersion. The original presence of frames is indicated by a surrounding strip, approximately 1.5 cm wide, which was commonly left unpainted at the edges of the images (Figure 13.1). On the reverse side of some icons, traces of the groove are easily discernible serving as markers of junctures left by the frame on the wooden surface. As a result, the surrounding plaques and board formed a smooth levelled surface on the reverse, while on the obverse the frame notably protruded above the image. In other instances, the frames were nailed onto the surface of the main board, while a few pre-iconoclastic examples have frames carved from the same piece of wood as the panel.3Mother of God, icon, encaustic (6th c.). Fragment showing the upper edge of the panel left unpainted and once concealed by the original frame (By permission of Saint Catherine’s Monastery, Sinai, Egypt; photo courtesy of Michigan-Princeton-Alexandria Expeditions to Mount Sinai)https://s3-euw1-ap-pe-df-pch-content-public-u.s3.eu-west-1.amazonaws.com/9780429283468/0f844e2d-f109-461d-8add-daa5f8471312/content/fig13_1.jpg"/>