Monday, January 28, 2008

Origin of icons

All scientists find it difficult to determine the author and origin of very old icons. Modern scientific methods allow determining approximate age of the icon, but the authorship and country are always doubtful, because icon painter (in most cases a true believer) had no right to sign his icons even on the other side of the board. Strictly described composition and limited combination of colors left no possibility to show icon painter's own style. Some outstanding icon painters were invited to work in temples of other countries.

Another difficulty in determining icon's origin is that development of this art coincided with various historical cataclysms. People migrations, wars, fires and revolutions, territories repartition, all these factors caused migration of icons as well. If an icon of Byzantine origin has been kept in a Ukrainian temple for thousand years, some scientists will call it Ukrainian, others Byzantine, but all of them have the right to stand their ground.

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