Andrei Rublev was considered one of the best Russian icon painters of all time. During his life, he managed to paint several cathedrals and churches. One of his most famous works is the icon, which depicts the Archangel Gabriel. Andrei Rublev did not do the work independently. His apprentices always helped him, and while working on this icon, together with Rublev, he created another famous Russian icon painter - Daniil Cherny.
The icon was painted in 1408. The master painted icons mainly for decorating the cathedrals, so this icon was part of the iconostasis of the Assumption Cathedral in the city of Vladimir. The icon depicts the Archangel Gabriel. The Orthodox Church admits that Gabriel had the honorary title of archistrategic. This status means that Gabriel, along with Michael, is the leader of the entire heavenly army.
Gabriel has always been considered the messenger of God. He informed people of good, good news. That is why Gabriel is depicted on the icon with a sphere in his right hand. This mirror sphere is a symbol of knowledge, light. Angels can look in this mirror and see the reflection of God there. We see that the icon shows the light emanating from a spherical ball - the rays of the sun that illuminate Gabriel are refracted.
In the left hand of the archangel it is customary to depict a staff or a lily. Andrei Rublev decided to depict a stick. This detail is not accidental, it is a symbol of the fact that the archangel is the messenger of God. To some extent, the staff of the archangel makes its way.
Clothing on the archangel Gabriel is traditional for the Orthodox icon painting of the XIV century. We see that the saint is depicted in a blue robe with a gold pattern on the edges. On the shoulders is a red pallium, which is an integral part of the clothing of the saints. It is worth noting that Gabriel was not always portrayed with wings. But in this work XIV we see that the archangel has wings, dark, almost black. Around the head is a golden halo.
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