st. Nicholas the wonderworker

Icon on Jerusalem Stone
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Product Weight: 250 g
Product dimensions: 10 * 12.5 * 1 cm
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Among the many images of the saints of the Orthodox Church of St. Nicholas icons have a special place: there was no place on Russian soil, which would not honor of St. Nicholas, where there was not its icons. Who was in the middle of the XVI century. in Russia, the Italian A.Gvanini in his "Description of Moscow", said: "Among other saints they most revered Saint Nicholas, and give him an almost divine honors: build a special temple, named after him, tell of his many miracles" [Gvanini]. Certainly not "divine" were the signs of respect, which belonged to the priests of the Russian people, but a historical fact - many temples dedicated to him, and wonders at his prayerful intercession witnessed by the Church. One form of evidence is the diversity of the icon of Saint Nicholas, the emergence of a new iconography is just due to the specific cases of gracious help of the Grand Priory.

As is known, the local veneration of Saint Nicholas, Archbishop of Myra, started in the second half of the IV., Shortly after his death. In Byzantium, to the VII century. veneration of him was spread very widely, the oldest of the known sources that contain information about the life of Saint Nicholas - is the creation of St. Andrew of Crete (VIII cent.), of St. Methodius, Patriarch of Constantinople (IX cent.), Simeon Metaphrastes (X c.). Shows the characteristics of Saint Nicholas, this last one:

"Come down to us is the ancient tradition of Nicholas with the angelic face of an old man, full of holiness and grace of God, adding also the following: if one met him, barely glancing at St. Be perfect and getting better, and anyone whose heart was burdened by some suffering or sadness, the mere sight of it acquires a consolation. emanated from him certain Most Lucent shine, and his face shone more Mosaic "(quoted in Byzantine legend. M., 1972. S. 154).

In 1087 the relics of the saint of God were moved from Myra to Bari, in Puglia, - this is now southern Italy province until the middle of the twelfth century belonged to the Byzantine Empire.

To Russia honoring the saint comes shortly after her baptism, and in the XI century. spreading everywhere. The celebration in honor of the relics of St. Nicholas (9 May) was established, we already ten years after the return of the relics, in 1097, apparently by St. Ephrem (+ approx. 1098). At the same time, service was compiled and the lives of the first Russian saint. Note that the first icons of St. Nicholas in Russia appear before the relics. From well-known in Russia at the earliest images - in the paintings of St. Sophia in Kiev (the middle of XI century.).

In Byzantine iconography of the saint is composed of X-XI centuries. (Mosaic of Constantinople Hagia Sophia), although its ancient image - fresco in the church of Santa Maria Antiqua in Rome - refers to the VIII century.

It is of interest to the mural began XII. of St. Michael's Monastery in Kiev (now it is in the Tretyakov Gallery): St. depicted in growth, with a blessing, and the open hand of the Gospel in his left hand, it is - the first known image of the saint of God with an open Gospel.

Other ancient iconographic type of Saint Nicholas - waist, closed to the gospel of the left hand in the Byzantine Empire, he became popular in the XI-XIII centuries. The earliest (XI cent.) Such an image - in the monastery of St. Catherine in Sinai. The oldest of the surviving Russian icons of this type was in Smolensk Cathedral Novodevichy Convent, she comes from Novgorod and is the end of the XII century. To Moscow from Novgorod, Yaroslavl with its icon of the Mother of God brought the Tsar Ivan the Terrible. In the 30-ies. The twentieth century., After closing the Novodevichy Convent, who brought it to the Historical Museum, and then to the Tretyakov Gallery. There was another, even more ancient (XII century.), The icon of this type of mosaic, it was kept in the museum of the Kiev Theological Academy, but during the Great Patriotic War, disappeared without a trace.

Noteworthy Image icon in the margin of the Smolensk Cathedral in the central part of the upper field shows the throne prepared for, Etimasiya; around - depiction of Cosmas and Damian. On the lateral fields - three rows of pairs of saints (Growth): top Saints Boris and Gleb, and in their hands they hold martyrs crosses and swords in scabbards. In the middle of the lateral fields, also in growth, depicted Martyrs Florus and Laurus. In the bottom row on the lateral fields, and on the lower field - holy women martyred, as martyrs in the upper part of the icon is revered holy Novgorod. In growth shows Martyr Eudocia and apparently, Domna, and at the bottom - oplechnye Paraskeva and Photinia. [5]

For Novgorod icons of this time images of the throne, and theirs will be revered saints in fields typical. Inscription (though later than the actual icon, made renovations at the time of the icon of the same Ivan the Terrible) in the lower field of the other well-known icon of the Novgorod late XIII century. "Nikola Lipenskogo" contains a prayerful appeal: "O great saint, Father Nicholas, his holy prayers for honest look upon inflowing your way, atonement and get rid of all evil and fill the hearts of their petition, and to deliver and to update this very icon of the wages and grant me these Weeze, in the future, and will hear them in every place call upon thee and asking for mercy from you: "The label text in a modified form is third in the Novgorod Chronicle under the year 1294. [21]

Novgorod icon of St. Nicholas Monastery of the Holy Spirit, who is now at the State Russian Museum, dates from the middle of the XIII century., Although the first mention of the monastery are in 1162 (in the First Novgorod Chronicle). In the medallions and the fields - in Novgorod revered saints.

Particularly interesting hagiographic icons of St. Nicholas. The tradition of depicting scenes from the life of the saint appears in the XI century., And to the XIV century. Icon of St. Nicholas with scenes from his life are common in the Balkans, Italy and Russia. The most ancient surviving Russian icons of Saint Nicholas with scenes from his life are of Novgorod churchyard Lubon (XIV c., RM) and the icon of Kolomna, who is now in the Tretyakov Gallery.

Border panels can be grouped into three main groups: the childhood of Saint Nicholas (birth, literacy), ordination (diaconal, priestly and episcopal) and help in various circumstances of life (getting rid of innocent prisoners from posechenny mechnogo; rescue of drowning, floating on the sea lyute, Whom death predstoyashe soon; secret blessing impoverished father desperately ready to give his three daughters in marriage bad for poverty, and much more). Number of scenes from his life in the icons of St. Nicholas than 20.

Let us return to the above-mentioned Lipenskoy icon of Saint Nicholas, after the desolation Lipenskogo monastery Skovorodovskoy she was in the monastery, and is now kept in the Novgorod Museum. Church of St. Nicholas in Lipno was built in 1292 and has more than half a century in Novgorod was not built a single stone of the temple: Novgorod is at war, then sort things out between themselves. The temple was built on the spot where in 1113 was miraculously liberated through a circular icon of St. (about it - below), stored then in Dvorishchensky Nicholas cathedral, according to legend, an icon, this was a list with the miraculous image of St. Nicholas who is in the choir of St. Sophia , found in Lipno icon healed Novgorod prince Mstislav, so in honor of this image and the miracle of it was built at the same time at the Cathedral of St. Nicholas's Court.

It is believed that the iconographic features of the icon associated not only with Novgorod, but also with the Western artistic tradition, and the monuments are not Mediterranean, but the actual European type, it could be and German art. The temple dedicated to Nikola not coincidentally was built exactly in Lipno, in one of the most important points of the waterway at the confluence Msta in Ilmen Lake, near the source of the Volkhov. Lipenskaya church, probably served as a guide for passing ships, and prayed before the icon, from the path of Novgorod or closer to the city.

As in the Orthodox Church, and in the west St. Nicholas was the patron of sailors, to be exact - floating and traveling. Not surprisingly, on the Asian coast and the Greek islands, many marina have names associated with Saint Nicholas. In the coastal cities of Europe were many churches dedicated to this saint (for example, the ancient monastery of St. Nicholas on the island of Lido in Venice). Interestingly, when in 1087 the relics of St. Nicholas of Myra moved to their merchants from the Italian port city of Bari, who led a large overseas trade, their rivals for the possession of this shrine were Venetians. The rivalry was so acute, that brought to the relics of St. Bari was the first time armed guard.

In XII-XIII centuries. veneration of Saint Nicholas in the western world has increased significantly, mainly due to the development of pilgrimage and crusades whose paths pass through southern Italy and in particular in Bari, where ground troops were ascending to the court and began to sail to the East. St. Nicholas prayed for people of all classes - sailors, merchants, lawyers, scholars, associated with it the idea of intercession, fidelity to the word, and therefore his name Knights led soldiers into battle. But, of course, particularly strong was the belief in his protection of seafarers and merchants, especially in the Baltic Sea. He was regarded as the patron of the cities that arise here, in the Baltic ports will almost certainly erected a temple dedicated to him. If the French or Italian shores Saint Nicholas shared his "domination" of the sea with other saints (such as a martyr Erasmus Formiyskim), then in the Baltic his veneration was unquestionable. Important role in spreading the cult of Santa Claus was played by German merchants who wanted to XIII century to seize trade and navigation in the Baltic Sea. Almost every city on the main trade routes of Central and Eastern European churches were built in honor of Saint Nicholas - patron saint of merchants, and especially a lot of them in vostochnonemetskih lands and adjacent areas.

In the XIII and XIV centuries the first half. veneration of Saint Nicholas is amplified throughout the Orthodox world. In Novgorod, related both to the Greek Orthodox tradition, and on the west by the example Lipenskoy icons you can see the features of the influence of Romanesque art: XIII century. with its rugged military-political events was a period of particularly wide artistic exchange between the West and the Orthodox world. Art Novgorod stands as one of the peculiar phenomena of this exchange.

Novgorod Chronicle brought us the "Legend of the brave finding of the miraculous icon of St. Nicholas Archbishop of Myra, the wonders of the ney sotvorshemsya in Novgorod and the establishment of the church in the name of this miracle worker on the Trading side at Yaroslavl's Court."

"Legend of the brave finding icons of St. Nicholas" is extant in manuscript XVII-XVIII centuries. It says that in the summer of 6621 (1113) Grand Prince Mstislav (Christian Georg) Svyatoslavich happened to fall into a fierce disease, he prayed may deliver him from the disease Saviour, the Mother of God and to help prizyvashe many saints and finally called an early Assistant and quickly poslushatelya great Nicholas the Wonderworker. At the time, points to legend, it was already known about the transfer of the relics of St. Nicholas of Bari in the World, where he received a lot of healing the sick. It was well known, and the miracle of salvation drowned baby, who was found alive in front of an icon of St. Nicholas in Kiev. One night holy prince was in a dream ("in the garments, like of the icon written") and ordered sent to Kiev, where "on polateh" (the gallery) is an icon of St.. Nicholas, "round board," sanctify the water from it (apparently, the water from the washing of the icon) and it "pokropitisya" for healing. In this holy showed "measure" of the image, and commanded to always remember about the icon with his image. When he awoke, the prince sent an embassy in Kiev, headed by their "boyar butler." However, the boat was stopped by a storm on Lake Ilmen. Messengers had to wait her for three days and three nights in a kind of quiet, "from the storm in a flighty zaehasha island ozhidahu time dondezhe wind blows over." On the fourth day the cook, wanting to scoop up water for cooking, I saw floating in the water round the board. "Boyar" Then took the board, was recognized in her an icon of St. Nicholas, in the same measure as the measure, given to him by the prince. The icon was removed from the water and taken to the boat to Novgorod and there solemnly greeted "otpevsha Molebny Honestly, vnesosha in ladiyu and vozvratishasya to Great Novugradu with great joy." Brought to the prince, the icon healed him. Prince followed the icon in the church, consecrated the sacred water from this miraculous icon and put it in the. In memory of the event was built the church of St. Nicholas "in Yaroslavl court", painted by a "wall of letters," and there was placed the miraculous icon "for these things glorious miracle of the Grand Duke Mstislav Svyatoslavich and the woman of his faithful Princess Anne vozdvignusha church in the name of the Stone perfectly others like our father among the saints, Archbishop Nicholas of Myra miracle-worker and a wonderful icon postavisha it. "

The icon of the round form with waist-length depiction of Saint Nicholas of Myra, come from the Church of St. Nicholas in Novgorod's Court on (now in the Novgorod Museum) - one of the most amazing monuments of ancient Russian icon painting, both because of the unusual shape, and because of the origin. Studies undertaken by historians in recent decades, including the publication of new sources, show that icon, as legend says, could actually be brought about in 1113 in connection with the foundation of St. Nicholas Church. In 1502 the original was taken to Moscow, where he subsequently died in a fire (burning the Kremlin in 1626.) To Novgorod in the XVI century. was copied, which reached our time.

In one of the lists Uvarov Novgorod Chronicle read: "In the year 1502 the Grand Prince of All Russia Ivan gave his yard in Great Novegrade in the same place at the Commerce side, O Soul of the Grand Dukes yard things were made, in Yaroslavl's Court. And coming to the church of St. Nicholas, Nicholas the Wonderworker and great miraculous icon round Sveza to Moscow and by putting himself at the king's court, in the church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin, and in the summer of 1626 at 9 Maia day, because of our sin, sunbathing sovereign's court, and burn that great icon of Nicholas the Wonderworker, the miraculous way round board. And others like that of the miraculous icon, yavlsheysya in Veliky Novgorod, the picture in the same measure, word for word, and to this day probably is. " Round icon of St. Nicholas in Novgorod enjoyed special veneration and glory.

It is interesting that there is a Greek legend of the miraculous appearance of mosaic icon of St. Nicholas in the monastery on Mount Athos Stavronikita. It states that in 1540, brought it to the fishing net into the sea near the monastery, was officially put to shore and hoisted in the monastery church. In Stavronikite available and appropriate image of a miracle - at tempera icons of the late XVI century.: St Nicholas blessing gesture with his right hand and on the left with the Gospel, to the sides and rear - monastery buildings at the bottom - the bay, the fishermen (the monks and laity) in the boat , the very icon displayed on a small scale three times: in fishing nets in the hands of one of the fishermen, and finally, on the shore.

Information about finding icons in Lipno in ancient Novgorod annals are few for 1113 reporting only tab prince Mstislav St. Nicholas Church. In the XVII century. there are more details. In Uvarov Chronicle says: "In the same year the image of St. Nicholas of Myra sailed from Kiev to Novgorod the Great, the board round."

Meanwhile, in the longer version III Novgorod Chronicle, compiled in the late XVII century., Gives more detail: "In the same year the image of St. Nicholas of Myra sailed from Kiev to Novgorod, the board round. Ustroisha The icon that is the greatest of the temple, at Yaroslavl's Court, in the church, and took in Lipno, with the Archbishop. "

Icons of the round form on a wooden board and Byzantine monuments of ancient Russian art has survived. Nevertheless round icon, type dating back to ancient times, could still exist at the end of XI - beginning of XII century., Although at that time were already very rare. It is known that imagines clipeatae, ie, image, inscribed in a circular frame, which mimics the shape of a shield (clipeus), were common in the late antique and early Christian art. Their round shape symbolizes a triumph, victory, and belonging to a different, higher world. In medallions included in the basic composition, placed Savior blessing hand of God, angels, or that the saints, that is, those who participated in the unseen events portrayed. There is reason to believe that the circular shape of the icon still in circulation in the IX., Or, at least, they are kept alive and vivid memory, and the outline of the eyes ikonopochitateley maintained its high symbolic meaning. Otherwise it would be difficult to explain the existence of many miniatures in Byzantine posleikonoborcheskih Psalms IX. - Hludovskoy (GMM KHLUDOV. 129 g) and the Monastery of Pantokrator (Athos, Pant. 61), depicting icons, usually circular, which serve as the object of outrage on the part of the iconoclasts and the protection of the ikonopochitateley. In komninovskoe time, namely, in the second half of the XI-XII centuries., These icons appear less frequently.

Whence came in Novgorod this unusual icon? Legend tells of her that it was a copy of the famous image, stored in Kiev, "on polateh" Hagia Sophia - the same way, which is famous rescu

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