Orthodox icon | Saint Prophet Elijah | Palekh Painting School.
In the center of the icon, the scene depicts Elijah in the desert by the stream Cherith (Kings 17:1-7). On the lower left, an angel appears to him in a dream (Kings 19:4-7).
On the left side, Elijah uses his cloak to separate the river Jordan and crosses it with his disciple Elisha (Elisa).
On the top right, Elijah ascends to heaven in a fiery chariot, passing his prophetic cloak to Elisha (Kings 2:11-13). Elisha then uses the cloak to part the Jordan River and crosses it. On the top left, Elijah blesses God the Father.
About the saint:
Elijah, also known as Elias, was a prophet from Tishbe in Gilead who lived during the reign of King Ahab (873-853 BC) and Queen Jezebel. The icon depicts his ascent to heaven on a fiery chariot, witnessed by his disciple Elisha.
Elijah foretold a three-year drought for the king and received instructions to seek refuge east of the Jordan by the brook Cherith. There, ravens miraculously fed him. Subsequently, he was sent to Sarepta, where a widow generously provided him with sustenance. Miraculously, her flour pot and jar of oil never ran out. When the widow’s son fell ill and died, Elijah restored him to life.
In the third year, Elijah confronted Ahab and Jezebel and challenged the prophets of Baal to a divine contest on Mount Carmel.
The people embraced Yahweh as the true God, leading to the capture and execution of the prophets of Baal. Faced with threats from Jezebel, Elijah sought refuge in the Sinai Peninsula. It was there that an angel delivered bread to him, foreshadowing the Eucharist. Elijah is revered as the forerunner of the Messiah.
The robes in the icon feature exquisite and elaborate gold painting, adding to its beauty and detail.
It is a stunning and finely painted work from the Palekh painting school.