'Only Begotten Son and Eternal Word'
Russia, 18th century
an analytical and didactic icon illustrative of the hymn Only Begotten Son and Eternal Word, depicting two angels supporting a circular mandorla enclosing Christ Emmanuel; with above, the Holy Trinity and God the Father, flanked four angels, two holding the sun and the moon, and two others holding spheres inscribed with the Christic monogram; and below, the Pieta; the complex composition also incorporating the Crucifixion, and the Mother of God of the Sign; the lower left-hand corner with an image of Christ as soldier clad in armour sitting on the transverse arms of the Cross the vertical of which transfixes Satan who is chained and being struck by an angel, within the open jaws of hell, the abyss with two cowering devils, the lower right-hand corner with a depiction of death holding a scythe and seated astride a lion trampling the prone bodies of the fallen
35.5 x 30cm (14 x 11 13/16in).
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