Because the last three posts have been long ones, this one is pretty short.
Moving northwards from Oria and Tarento, along the via Francigena, we are in country testifying to the enduring power of tradition, in imagery and customs re-interpreted to survive the effects of war, time, conquest, and religions introduced or imposed. Imagery can do this; it can retain faithfully the forms and original character of things long after memory of their formal codes of belief are quite lost.
Here, it seems hardly surprising that a fifteenth-century manuscript should still evince a Hellenistic origin and character; the following is but one instance of many within this manuscript. You either see it, or you don’t. The medallion celebrates Alexander’s admiral, Nearchus.
I am no great enthusiast for using genetic patterns to explain cultural products: one’s Y haploid group does not determine what languages one learns, what books one reads or whether or not one has intellectual capacity and curiosity. But such maps do illustrate one thing well: the oldest and most natural lines of movement across a region. That shown below shows why southern Italy was more open to influence from Syria and north Africa than from the north, and there existed a similar connection between Greece and north Africa. The sea-lanes were travelled regularly, from one end of the Mediterranean to the other, before the end of the second millennium BC., Sicily serving as a form of half-barrier which effectively directed that movement from its eastern side to the coast of North Africa. Within the southern end of the peninsula, as in Sicily, Hellenistic workshops produced artefacts in Egyptian style before the rise of Rome. 
The Great Angel.
To Christianity, Michael is the name of that great Angel whose role is that of defender and deliverer, and the church still says that Michael’s shrines on the hilltops were first made in the fifth century AD. But that same character, under a name now forgotten, had been revered in this part of the world from the time the first urban settlements occur, in the seventh or sixth centuries BC.
Originally manifesting attributes of both male and female, it must have once been widely known. In the eastern Mediterranean, the earliest strand of Jewish religious thought carries a trace of some similar character  and by Strabo’s time it must have been known to the peoples who lived in the south in his time:Samnites, Brutians and Lucanians.
When the first Roman emperor in Byzantium promoted Christianity as the preferred religion, Michael changed his religion too.
He became the first winged figure in western and Byzantine Christian art, but does does not appear so in Christian iconography until the middle of the 1st millennium AD, unless this Coptic figure said to date to the 1stC AD, is an exception.
When Theodore passed through (if he did) the populace paid their taxes to a Langobard king, but century later the Langobard’s hold which was always tenuous, was gone and the kingdom dissolved. They left little trace in the south, no more than a few buildings and those mainly ecclesiastical. On the other hand, Michael certainly impressed them. Remnants of the Langobard population congregated in Benevento and around Naples, and since the road from Benevento to the Adriatic touches the sea near a cave-shrine to Michael at Gargano, it became their most revered shrine too. That road became known as the ‘Langobard Way’ – an important pilgrimage route in medieval times.
 see László Török, Hellenistic and Roman Terracottas from Egypt (1995) refers to Besques (1963) and (1992) as authority in this connection.
Simone Mollard-Besques, Catalogue raisonné des figurines et reliefs en terre-cuite grecs, étrusques et romains [Musée du Louvre. Département des antiquités grecques et romaines, Paris : Editions des Musées nationaux. (1954 and 1992)
 The older figure may represent the original ‘Adam’, made in the image of the creator-deity. In the works of the Jewish law, the earliest idea of Adam has him also, in one version of the creation story, both male and female, for the text reads literally: “male and female He created him” – not ‘them’ as the translations have it. Michael’s name is translated as if it meant “Who is as Gd?” which is the import of the name, though in the original was expressed as [the being who] “is as Gd” – that is, made as the image of the deity.
Jewish religious thinking had very early moved away from that idea of the male-and-female being, the story of Adam’s rib showing the moment of distinction between the sexes as one held to be natural and intended by Gd. Margaret Barker, The Great Angel: a study of Israel’s second God, SPCK (1992) remains the principal study of the ‘Great Angel’ in Jewish thought available in English.