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Made by: Unknown

On view in: Icon Room

About this object

In this variant of the Hodigitrea type the Mother of God is shown half-length, turned slightly towards the full-length figure of Christ who sits on her left arm and faces the viewer directly, his right hand raised in blessing. Her right hand gestures towards him. Both are richly dressed, she in a maphorion with foliate designs, he in a hymation of some very soft material. Each has a venets with an engraved sunburst pattern, and the Mother of God's venets is topped by a split crown held aloft by two cherubim. Flanking the Mother of God are (on the left) St. John the Blessed and St. Nikita and (on the right) St. John Chrysostum and St. Paraskeve Piatnitsa. A plaque in the bottom center reads "A true representation of the icon of the Most Holy Smolensk Mother of God." Both the figures and the inscriptions are separated from each other by a beaded and crimped edging applied to the silver gilt repousse. This and the other inscriptions on the oklad show a mixture of ornate western-style scrolled letters, plainer capitals and an italic script. The hands and faces which show through the oklad are painted in the rosey flesh tones typical of the 18th century. The ground of the recto appears to be painted the same blue as appears on the verso.

Object name:
Made from:
Tempera on wood -- silver gilt
Made in:
Saint Petersburg, Russia
Date made:
20.3 × 16.8 cm (8 × 6 5/8 in.)

Detailed information for this item

Catalog number:
Signature marks:
INSCRIPTION; MARK; LABEL OKLAD: on bottom edge 1) crossed anchors and sceptre for St. Petersburg, 2) 1783, 3) EB, 4) PS in shield; "ISTINNOE IZOBRAZHENIE IKONY PRTYIA BTSY SMOLENSKIIA"(bottom edge of verso); "MR" "FU" (in medallions on upper edge); "IS KhS" (above Christ's head); ICON: on verso "RESTORED 4-1-86 No 23" (on masking tape)
Credit line:
Bequest of Marjorie Merriweather Post, 1973