European & American Fine Art and Antiques Including Russian & Asian Works
May 18th-19th, 2010
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Lot 4
A FINE RUSSIAN ICON OF THE KURSKAYA KORENNAYA MOTHER OF GOD, 18TH CENTURY. At the center of the icon is an image of the Sign (Znamenie) Mother of God. The head of the Virgin is flanked with Greek abbreviated inscriptions identifying Her as MP OY (Meter Theou) or the Mother of God. Flanking the head of the infant Christ upon her chest within a circular mandrola are the Greek inscriptions IC XC identifying the infant as Isus Kristos- Jesus Christ. The central 'Sign' image is surrounded by nine Old Testament Prophets depicted amongst blooming and scrolling foliage and holding in their hands opens scrolls with Old Testament texts prefiguring the Mother of God. They are identified by corresponding inscriptions in Old Church Salvonic being clockwise from upper left, King David, King Solomon, Daniel, Jeremiah, Elijah, Avvakum, Gideon, Isaiah, and Moses. At top center an empty cloud-form exhibits the faint outlines of a painted over image of God the Father which is typically found in this location on icons of this subject including the prototype. It is fair to assume the image was painted over at the request of a pious believer who was conflicted with the theological dilemma of depicting someone who has never been seen-namely God the Father. Indeed painting God the Father in the form of a man was condemned by the Seventh Ecumenical Council and forbidden by the Council of Moscow in 1666. There are many well known stories in which church hierarchs visiting various cathedrals, churches and monasteries ordered that icons depicting God the Father be removed. Nevertheless, the popularity of depicting God the Father on icons never ceased perhaps partially due to the image of the Ancient of Days as written about in the book of Daniel (7:9). The original (13th century) miracle working icon of the Kurskaya Mother of God or 'Kursk Root' icon, was rescued from the Soviets in 1920, eventually making its way to America where it now resides in the main cathedral dedicated to it in the Synod of Bishops in New York. 12.5 inches x 10.5 inches (31.5cm x 26.5cm).
Estimate:  $2,000 - 3,000   € 1,500 - 2,250
Price Realized: $3,840.00
All items are sold “AS IS” and there will be no returns based on condition. The items sold are often of considerable age and will exhibit wear, usage and damage often not listed in the catalog entry. The absence of condition remarks in the catalog entry DOES NOT mean the item is in perfect condition. Prospective buyers are in ALL CASES responsible for determining the physical condition of lots. No employee or agent of Jackson's International Auctioneers and Appraisers is authorized to make on our behalf or on that of the consignor any representation or warranty, oral or written, with respect to any property. Therefore, if a prospective bidder has not examined the property to their satisfaction before the sale, or his/her agent has not inspected the property, Jackson's recommends that they not bid on the property. All dimensions are approximate. The condition of frames is not guaranteed.