Painting

Icon: Our Lady Eleousa

Icon: Our Lady Eleousa
(click image to zoom-in)
Painting, Tempera on panel and gilding, 33.8x28 cm
Origin: Russia, Second half of the 16th century

One of the many types of image of the Virgin is that known as Eleousa, in which the Virgin tenderly embraces the Christ Child. Its iconography developed in Byzantium and was widespread throughout medieval European art, but the type appears particularly frequently in the icons of the Russian Orthodox Church.

The Virgin inclines her head, supporting and embracing the Child, who presses His cheek to hers. With His right hand He touches His mother's chin, holding a furled scroll in His left.

Reverence for this type of image in Russia led to numerous repetitions, which, while reproducing the iconographical specifics of the type, were never copies. Small changes and variations might be introduced to create new, no less revered, versions of the image, such as those known as the "Virgin of the Don" and the "Virgin of Vladimir".

This icon was produced in the second half of the 16th century. It reveals the influence of Moscow traditions, particularly in the iconography, the restrained colouring and the severity of the Virgin's face.

Personage: The Mother of God and Child
Source of entry: State Museum of Ethnography of the Peoples of the USSR, Leningrad, 1941
School: Moscow
Theme: The Bible and Christianity

See also

Byzantine Icons Holy Virgin Mary: Mother of God Eleousa
The icon of the Mother of God Eleousa, is almost always equated with the icon of the ... to as the Mother of God of Tenderness, or as Our Lady of Tenderness.
Byzantine Icons Holy Virgin Mary: Mother of God of Tenderness
The icon of the Mother of God of Tenderness, is almost always equated with ... to as Our Lady of Tenderness, or as the Mother of God «Eleousa», its Greek name.
The Mother of God Eleousa: Our Lady of Compassion
The Mother of God Eleousa: Our Lady of Compassion ... which is shown by a square slot in the icon with holes made by nails with which the pole would have ...
Miraculous Image of Our Lady of Vladimir
The origin of the ancient Marian icon, Our Lady of Vladimir, can be traced back ... According to research, this excellent representation of an Eleousa was ...

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