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AN ICON « THE KAZANSKAYA MOTHER OF GOD» WITH SAINT TATIANA Yaroslavl, mid-19th century
Wood, gesso, gold leaf, tempera 36.5 x 28.5 cm Condition : generally in a good condition, fragmentary tinting on the gold of the Nimbus, tinting of the paint layer in the fields, on the back side there are some small circular holes produced by xylophagous insects. The Kazanskaya Mother of God is the most venerated variant of the Hodegetria (Directress) icon style in Russia. The original icon of Our Lady of Kazan was brought to Russia from Constantinople in the 13th century and then, the icon disappeared for more than a century. The icon was miraculously recovered in Kazan in 1579. Russian military commanders Dmitry Pozharsky (17th century) and Mikhail Kutuzov (19th century) attributed to the miraculous icon the help in saving the country from the Polish invasion of 1612, the Swedish invasion of 1709, and Napoleon’s invasion of 1812. The Kazanskaya Mother of God became the Holy Protectress of Russia. The icon was often chosen as a palladium of military regiments; many churches, altars and chapels were built in honour of the revelation of the Virgin of Kazan and in memory of the military events of the Russian history.