Orthodox icon | Mother of God of Vladimir with Moscow Saints | 25035


  • Russian icon
  • 19th century
  • Metal/Bronze/Brass icon
  • 2.4 x 2.2 in | 6 x 5.5 cm


This bronze/brass/yellow metal travel icon, embellished with multicolored enamel, forms part of a Tetraptch.

The icon portrays the Mother of God with the child on her right arm, representing the Umilenie icon type developed in Byzantium during the 11th century. The tender bond between the Mother and Child is evident, as she lovingly gazes at Him. The expression of sorrow on her face signifies her anticipation of the future Passion that awaits Him.

The Mother of God of Vladimir icon holds great significance in the Russian Orthodox Church and is celebrated on three different feast days: May 21, June 23, and August 26. It is the most renowned and revered among Russia’s miraculous icons. Each feast day commemorates a significant miracle associated with the icon. The image itself is one of the three portraits of the Mother of God with the child painted by the apostle Luke. According to tradition, when Mary saw these three images, she prophesied, “The blessed goodness that was born of me will also be mine with the holy icons.”

During the middle of the 5th century, the icon, originally known as the Vladimirskaya, was brought from Jerusalem to Constantinople. In the 12th century, it was sent to Kiev by the Patriarch of Constantinople and placed in the Devičij Virgin Monastery in Vyshhorod. Later, in 1155, it accompanied the Prince of Vyshhorod on his campaign to the north. Along the way, people gathered to pray before the icon, witnessing miraculous events. When they reached the Klyazma River, the horses carrying the icon refused to move any further. In response, the prince named the place Bogolyubovo, meaning “loved by God,” and constructed two churches. The icon found its permanent home in one of these churches. Over time, a women’s monastery and the city of Bogolyubov were established. On September 21, 1160, the icon was transferred to the city of Vladimir, where a grand cathedral had been recently erected. Since then, the icon has been known as the “Vladimirskaya.” Today, it resides in the Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow.

Additionally, the icon features depictions of four Moscow metropolitans and two fools in Christ, further enriching its symbolism and historical context.

Source: © Ikonen Mautner. Typing errors, other errors or changes reserved. For more information: “Das Synaxarion. Die Leben der Heiligen der Orthodoxen Kirche.” (http://www.prodromos-verlag.de/buecher.html) and Joachim Schäfer: Das Ökumenische Heiligenlexikon – https://www.heiligenlexikon.de

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Orthodox icon | Mother of God of Vladimir with Moscow Saints | 25035
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