Tag Archives: Holy Spirit

Why does John the Baptist have wings in Orthodox icons?

August 29th is the day that commemorates the Beheading of John the Baptist. Why is this Saint, almost uniquely, shown in many icons with wings?

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The Holy Spirit as a dove in iconography

A previous post on the Throne of Preparation showed the widespread (in time and location) practice of depicting the Holy Spirit as a dove. The Holy Spirit did descend “as a dove” at the Baptism of Christ, and so naturally … Continue reading

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Hetoimasia | The Throne of Preparation

The Hetoimasia (Gr. ἑτοιμασία, “preparation”), or Throne of Preparation, is one of the most widespread images in iconography, particularly in Orthodox Christianity. It very rarely dominates any composition it is part of, so the image and its significance can be … Continue reading

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An icon for Whitsun | Pentecost Mosaic of San Marco

The image above is of the interior of a dome at the 9th-century St Mark’s Basilica in Venice. The mosaic of gold, bronze and other precious materials dates from the 12th century and depicts the descent of the Holy Spirit … Continue reading

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Who’s in the Transfiguration Icon?

“There were eight on the mountain, but only six were visible.” – St Gregory Palamas, Homily on the Transfiguration Following on from a previous post on the Icon of the Transfiguration, there is more to discover in the icon by … Continue reading

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Holy Trinity Icon of the Written Stone Monastery

The Written Stone Monastery (Manastirea Piatra Scrisa)was built on the site of an Icon of the Holy Trinity, painted onto the rocks of a cliff-side in rural Romania. Above the Icon is the Caransebes-Orsova railway, built in the 19th century, … Continue reading

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Pentecost Icon as an Icon of the Church

The Icon for the feast of Pentecost is also called the Descent of the Holy Spirit, as it is a depiction of the event described in the Book of Acts (Acts 2:1-4) when the Holy Spirit descended as tongues of … Continue reading

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