Icon Jesus Christ. The iconography of Jesus Christ: the most famous icons, meaning, what help, how to pray
Imposed in the biblical veto on the image of God and his hypostases, was unshakable until the VIII century. However, the Seventh, which took place in 787, changed the tenets of Christianity, including the icon worship. Changed the very interpretation of the ban. Now it was forbidden to invent images, since such was considered the creation of idols. In this case, the image of the miraculous faces of the Savior by the church was allowed. Moreover, it has become the most popular iconography theme. But it was necessary to portray Jesus according to the rules.
Image standards of Jesus Christ
The iconography of Jesus Christ and previously obeyed certain rules. The main characteristic features began to be used in iconography, although the canonical image of the Savior was not one option.
- The characteristic features of Jesus include the nimbus with the cross inscribed in it.He showed the incarnation of God the Father in God's son. But in the image of “Jesus of Hulk” only the cross was imprinted.
- The icons used the first letters of the name of God. For example, if next to a face or a nimbus there is an “IC XC”, then without decoding it becomes clear that Jesus is depicted.
- The very face of Christ was depicted elongated, with refined features and expressive eyes, in the clothes of ordinary people (shirt, cape).
- The face in the center of the icon looks like you. However, there were iconoclasts who still referred to the Old Testament and forbade these images of the holy face. And iconopaths believed that man has the right to contemplate his creator - God - in human form. And that does not violate biblical restrictions.
In iconoclastic disputes, this issue has become fundamentally important. After all, it influenced not only church art. The icon should have a single image of God. It was he who was supposed to be considered central. And from this image depended on the construction of the whole staircase of the images of the structure of the universe.
The first Christians did not record such vivid disputes, since the images at that time were more sign-symbolic.Realism was not required of them. Only the Christians themselves understood what was on the icon, and what was the meaning of it in itself. Only they could read the entire secret design of the image. One of such icons includes the Sinai image of Christ Pantocrator.
Description of the image of Christ Pantocrator
Written icon in the style of late antic encaustic. Juicy, quite realistic, masterly. These images of Christ belong to the V-VI centuries. Images are distinguished by unaccustomed realism, compared with the standard manner of writing. Some even read some sensuality of the face.
It is this iconographic type and these physiological features that will be traced back to the twentieth century. If you look at a few early images of Jesus (the image of the Savior in the composition “Transfiguration”, the image of Christ Coming in the clouds, the belt image of the Pantokrator), one image is traced between them, the icons are close to each other. And this could only say that the face of Jesus was already fully formed. And the images were approved before the start of the iconoclastic disputes. In the period of disputes, it remained only to give a theological statement, which was so lacking. What was done.
Modern iconography of Christ
Nowadays iconography is very diverse. And in order to highlight the basic types of images, you can take as an example the main image of the Savior, Not Made By Hand. How did the first, iconless icon appear? According to the legends of Christians, the eastern tradition is true, which dates back to the sixth century.
Legend of the first icon of Jesus Christ
According to legend, King of Edessa Avgarem V, suffering from leprosy, after hearing about the miracles performed by Jesus, sent his messenger to the Savior asking him to heal him. And if Christ cannot come, then send at least the face of the Savior in order to receive healing from the disease through the face. But to get to Jesus was not easy. He was surrounded by a crowd. And the artist could not draw a portrait. Seeing this, Jesus washed his face and wiped it with a handkerchief. Then the face appeared on the scarf.
By the way, this is not the only version of the appearance of the Savior. The western, medieval, version of this tale arose around the thirteenth to fifteenth centuries. And according to this version, the pious Veronica, who accompanied the Savior on the Way of the Cross, gave a handkerchief to Jesus.With this handkerchief, Christ wiped blood and sweat from his face. And then on the scarf also stood out the image.
Icons with a similar image of the divine face were called "Plat of Veronica." They depicted only the head and from the original version of the miraculous Mandilion, they were distinguished by the thorn wreath on the head of Christ. Today this is the famous icon of Jesus Christ in the crown of thorns.
Image of Christ “Spas a Wet Beard”
On the territory of Russia, there are also similar icons, for example, “Spas Mokraya Beard”. This face appeared in the IX century. The oldest known image is the Novgorod Savior. In the manner of such a drawing, it is closer to the classical type and corresponds to the Eastern legend about washing the face. The image is slightly different from the canon. In particular, here Jesus has a beard as if moistened with water.
Savior the Almighty
The most common image, known as the Savior Almighty or Pantokrator. This is a bust image of the Savior. There are also options for growth, waist or on the throne. In his left hand is a scroll with a scripture or a gospel, the fingers of his right hand are folded in a blessing gesture.The description of the icon of Jesus Christ of Pantokrator is mentioned in the 4th – 6th centuries in Byzantium. The oldest such image dates back to the middle of the 6th century - it is the Christ Pantocrator of the Sinai Monastery.
Belief in God embodied in man is precisely the correct meaning of the great icon. She marked the beginning of the dogma of the Incarnation. And this dogma became the key among Christians. And the image came to our days and is quite common. On the frescoes in churches, in houses, decorates the domes of churches.
There are several options for the Savior Almighty, for example, the Savior in power. This type of icon provides an image of Jesus in full growth in a sitting position. The background is an image of the earth, the spiritual world and the invisible world in the form of a red square, blue oval and red diamond, respectively. There are similar icons and no background, they are called the Savior on the throne.
A special type of iconography is represented by Spas Emmanuel. His main difference from the canonical is the image of Christ, not in adulthood, but in childhood. However, all the usual attributes, such as a nimbus and a cross over his head, are present in this type of icons of the Savior.Most often, this image is not solitary, an example of this is the image of the Virgin with the baby Jesus. This is intended to emphasize the relationship of Christ with the Father God.
On these icons, Jesus Christ is depicted in the center, surrounded by various biblical characters - the Virgin, John, apostles, or other saints. The Savior himself is depicted as a Pantokrator on a throne.
For the first time this type of icons is mentioned in the seventh century. The meaning of the icon is that the Savior is the intercessor of the human race before God the Father, conveys human prayers, promises to be a gracious defender of everyone who turns to him. The image helps the believer to become closer to the Most High, repent, cleanse the soul, receive forgiveness for sins.
The Angelic Deesis is a traditional Russian icon that appeared in the 12th century. This is one of the varieties of icons such as the Deesis. Here Christ is depicted together with the archangels Gabriel and Michael.
The image of "Presentation of the Queen"
Another type of iconography - "Presentation of the Queen." On it, Jesus is represented in the royal dalmatics, Laura and the kamilavka crown. In one hand he has a rod, in the other - the Gospel. This image conveys that God is associated with the church.And Christ is here in the role of a priest.
Consider all kinds of icons is not possible. We have described only the most basic. For example, you can find the names of the icons of Jesus Christ, do not meet the standard canons. Here are some of them.
Saved by the good Silence
On it, Jesus is written in the form of an angel, that is, before taking on a human form. The icon itself depicts a young man in light-colored clothes, wings are visible behind his back, and the star-like nimbus of Lord Savaof above his head. His hands are empty. Since he has not yet descended to earth. And yet not become a mentor for humanity.
Savior the Great Bishop
Here we see the savior in the role of the priest. He is wearing lush clothes, his head is decorated with a crown. Here, as in the Savior Almighty, he holds the Gospel and is engaged in blessing with his second hand.
On these icons, Christ is represented in the image of a teacher and mentor. Basically, he is depicted as an ordinary shepherd with his head bowed, carrying a lost sheep on his shoulders.
There are also icons of God Jesus Christ, the beginning of which is taken from the Old Testament scriptures. For example, "Christ in the tomb." This image is perhaps one of the most tragic in Christian iconography.Here the Savior is depicted dead, his body is on the bed next to the open coffin. Such images are purely symbolic, showing how Christ took his fate with attention.
There are also Catholic icons of Jesus Christ. They are distinguished from the Orthodox by the free image of the Savior and Latin inscriptions.
Before any image of Christ, you can offer a prayer to the Savior, sincerely ask for the forgiveness of sins and the mercy of the Lord.