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  • Icon: The Virgin

    Technique:
    tempera on panel and gilding
    Dimensions:
    80x30 cm

Icon: The Virgin

Russia, First half of the 16th century

This icon formed part of the Deisis Tier of an iconostasis, the altar screen which divides the altar from the main body of a Russian Orthodox church. At the centre of the Deisis Tier was an icon of Christ Enthroned. The Virgin is shown in traditional manner, full length and praying with head bowed, wearing a long brown robe or maphorion. Her role is to act as an intercessor - asking Christ for forgiveness for the sins of mankind, for the whole purpose of the Deisis Tier (Deisis - in Greek means "supplication" or "entreaty") was to embody the idea of such intercession by the saints for mankind before Christ the judge on the day of the Last Judgement. The Deisis Tier, including this icon, must have been the work of a master from Kargopol, sometime in the first half of the 16th century. He was obviously much inspired by contemporary Novgorod art, but he also turned to earlier images, which was characteristic of many artists of the Russian North. This duality is revealed both in the figures and in the use of colour.

Title:

Icon: The Virgin

Place:

Technique:

tempera on panel and gilding

Dimensions:

80x30 cm

Acquisition date:

Entered the Hermitage in 1957; handed over from the Lyadinsky village council, Kargopolsky District, Arkhangelsk Oblast

Inventory Number:

ЭРИ-243

Category: