Icon of the Deisis (Novgorod) – J41


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Here is a Russian icon from Novgorod that was painted in 1700 and shows the Lord seated on His Throne surrounded by many Saints whose hands are raised in supplication to Him to hear the prayers of the Faithful who are ardently asking for help, for the word Deisis means supplication.  The Lord Jesus Christ holds in His left hand a book of the Holy Gospels, which is a written icon of His Life and Teachings and which is venerated in Church during Divine Services.  It is open to show that He is teaching us through His words and life how we ought to live.

His right hand is raised in blessing as He most especially blesses all who come to Him and ask for a blessing.  Too often we ourselves forget to ask earnestly for such blessings.  On His right hand stands the Virgin Theotokos and on His left hand stands St. John the Baptist, as these places have been prepared for them by God’s express Will and their most active cooperation.  To the Virgin’s right stands St. Peter and the St. John’s left stands St. Paul, who as the chief Apostles also supplicate for us all.  Behind the Throne are two angels, and two other Saints stand on the far sides.

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18th c. (Early)