Lot 11

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A VERY RARE RUSSIAN ICON OF “THE SATURDAY OF ALL SAINTS", STROGANOV SCHOOL, 17TH CENTURY.  The upper border inscribed with a lengthy liturgical prayer and immediately below the Deisis, depicting Christ enthroned at center with the Mother of God on the left and John the Forerunner on the right. Further out still the archangels and other ranks of angels. The lower section divided into four reserves and each reserve with two groups of saints identified by the inscriptions above their heads. On the left, “Choir of Venerable Women” and next to them, “Choir of Venerable Fathers.” At the same level on the right are, “Choir of Holy Martyrs” (male) and “Choir of Holy Martyrs” (female). At lower left is, “Choir of Holy Fathers” and “Choir of Holy Apostles.” On the right, “Choir of Holy Prophets” and next to them “Choir of Holy Forefathers.”  14.2 inches x 12 inches (36 x 30.5 cm).

Estimate:  $3,000 - 5,000   € 2,700 - 4,500
Price Realized: $11,250.00

Many church traditions, including its schedules of services, feasts, and fasts, is structured by its calendar, which provides a strictly observed intermingled set of cycles of varying lengths. The fixed annual cycle begins 1 September, and establishes the times for all annual observances that are fixed by date, such as Christmas. The annual Paschal cycle is established relative to the varying date of Pascha each year and effects the times for such observances as Pascha itself, Great Lent, Holy Week, and the feasts of Ascension and Pentecost.

Lesser cycles also run in tandem with the annual ones. A weekly cycle of days prescribes a specific focus for each day in addition to others that may be observed. Each day of the Weekly Cycle is dedicated to certain special memorials. Sunday is dedicated to Christ's Resurrection; Monday honors the Holy Bodiless Powers (Angels, Archangels, etc.); Tuesday is dedicated to the prophets and especially the greatest of the Prophets, St. John the Forerunner and Baptist of the Lord; Wednesday is consecrated to the Cross and recalls Judas' betrayal; Thursday honors the Holy Apostles and Hierarchs, especially St. Nicholas, Bishop of Myra in Lycia; Friday is also consecrated to the Cross and recalls the day of the Crucifixion; Saturday (as depicted in the offered lot) is dedicated to All Saints, especially the Mother of God, and to the memory of all those who have departed this life in the hope of resurrection and eternal life.

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