Virgin of the Sign


Virgin of the Sign

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Icon nb 66

Size : 29 x 25 cm.

Linden board

Gilded halo. Egg tempera.

This icon is a variation of the Virgin Orant or praying found in the catacombs. She symbolizes the Christian soul praising and adoring God. She is shown with the medallion of glory containing her Son on her chest. This medallion symbolizes the divinity of Christ and means that the First born before all times inhabited the virginal womb of Mary.

Tradition sees in this icon an image of the prophecy of Isaiah (Is. VII, 13 - 14) in the times of king Achaz which is the veiled foretelling of the birth of the Son of God.
The child Jesus, in the Byzantine tradition, is never represented as a tiny baby, as he is above all the Word of God. He always wears the clothing of an adult and yet his reduced size indicates the nature of a little child.

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