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AN ICON ‘ST. NICHOLAS’ IN SILVER OKLAD Russia, second half of 16th century
Wood, gesso, tempera Oklad – silver, coinage, engraving, gilding. Hallmarks of maker in Cyrillic ‘A.P’, assaymaster in Cyrillic ‘N.D.’ over date 1832, coat of arms of Moscow city with 1832 and 84 silver mark. Oklad dated 1832. 31 х 26 сm St. Nicholas, Archbishop of Myra (V century) is one of the most revered Christian saints. In Russia, the cult of St. Nicholas was particularly strong in the national pantheon. Russian images of St. Nicholas have been known since the 11th century. Traditionally, St. Nicholas is depicted waist-length, in bishop’s robes. In the medallions there is a scene of the «Miracle of Nicaea» on the sides of the saint - Christ and the Mother of God presenting to Nicholas the attributes of episcopal service. It is likely that this icon belonged to this type. However, due to the destruction of the other paintings, the fragment with the countenance was transferred to a new base. Style and date: The icon is executed in accordance with the ancient aesthetic and technological canon. The pictorial techniques are far from schematic and mechanistic, typical of the later period. Complexity, multilayered facial painting, character of details and coloring bring the icon closer to the monuments of the second half of the 16th century.