Russia Religion Subjects Jesus Christ Christ the Blessed Silence

Christ the Blessed Silence

Images of Jesus Christ as a boy with His arms crossed on His chest, sporting angel’s wings and a halo with crossed quadrangles, first appeared in wall-paintings in Greece, Mount Athos and the Balkans in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Similar representations are also encountered in Russia in the sixteenth century, such as the frescoes of the Dormition Cathedral in the Moscow Kremlin.

Christ’s title of the Blessed Silence comes from the Old Testament: “He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth” (Isaiah 53:7). Jesus’ crossed hands on His chest repeat the gesture of the communicant, while the deacon vestments symbolise His priesthood. The halo is similar to the nimbus of the Lord Sabaoth and signifies the Second Person of the Trinity. Christ’s angelic appearance and wings show that He is an envoy of God and link the Blessed Silence to the image of Christ as the Angel of the Grand Council.

Random articles