Russia Religion Subjects Virgin Mary The Enthroned Virgin

The Enthroned Virgin

The first images of the Enthroned Virgin were painted in Egypt in the early period of Coptic art. One of the most famous examples is a sixth-century fresco at the Monastery of St Apollo in Bawit. The Mother of God sits on a throne in an austere en face pose, holding a medallion of the Saviour Emmanuel.

Such images were encountered in the prophet or local tier of the iconostasis in Russian churches from the sixteenth century onwards. They are also a feature of such hymnographic compositions as We Rejoice in Thee, Eulogy to the Mother of God with Akathist and The Congregation of the Mother of God.

The iconography of the Enthroned Virgin has survived virtually unchanged, with the exception of the medallion. The throne and the figure of the Theotokos fill the entire space, while Jesus Christ blesses with His right hand and holds a scroll in His left hand.

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