In late 17th century Russia, Tsar Alexei ordered modernization of some of the traditions
and practices of the Orthodox Church.  A small minority of believers resisted the changes and eventually
 broke away from the mainstream Orthodox tradition.  They became known as the Old Believers. 
Today, over 300 years later, many communities of Old Believers remain, both inside and outside Russia.
From early on, they favored a type of icon for their devotional practices that was cast of metal,
usually brass.  The brass-cast icon was already in existence throughout the region
well before 1000 AD; the Old Believers adopted it as a symbol of their unity
partly because Peter the Great forbade the casting of icons.  Today, for a variety of reasons,
brass-cast icons are especially important and valuable, mostly because they survived intact.
The signs of wear to the soft brass of many are delightful
metaphors of their cherished use.

Brass-cast Old Believer's icons are rare outside Russia, but occasionally
become available.  This grouping was painstakingly collected both inside Russia and
 in the Baltic countries of Estonia and Latvia.  They are authentic; the dating,
however, is general, primarily determined stylistically.

This is part of a collection that presently numbers thirty seven icons.

Virgin of the Sign   
(Burning Bush)

   18th century.  5.2 x 7 cm.
   With vernicle.
OB 1001
Virgin of Joy of All Afflicted      

   17th-18th century.  5.4 x 6.3 cm.
OB 1002
Jesus Enthroned:   
Deisus Row
   18th-19th century.  5.5 x 6 cm.
OB 1003

Image Not Made by Hands   


  18th-19th century.  5.7 x 6 cm.
OB 1004


  Saint Martyrs:   
 Kirik and Iulita   


   17th century.  5 x 7 cm. 
   With vernicle.
OB 1005

Old Testament Trinity   


   17th-18th century.  5 x 7 cm.
   With  vernicle.
OB 1006


Selected Saints   

Martyrs Kirik and Ulita, Consecrator 
 Gregory the Theologian and John  Zlatoust,
Martyrs Paraskeva,  
Pyatnitsa, Barbara and Ekaterina   

  18th-19th century.  4.9 x 5.8 cm
OB 1007

St. Nicholas:   
Wonder Worker

   17th-18th century.  3.8 x 5 cm.
OB 1008

St. John the Baptist:   
Angel of the Desert


   18th-19th century.  6.2 x 6.7 cm. 
   Right panel of  (three)-leaf skladen.
OB 1009

Life of Christ   


   19th century.  10 x 16.5 cm.
   Skladen  panel.
OB 1010

Life of Christ   


   19th century.  10 x 10.6 cm. 
   Right panel of a skladen.
OB 1011

St. Nicholas:   
Wonder Worker


   17th-18th century.  9 x 10.5 cm.
   Three-leaf skalden.
   With verni
OB 1012

Our Lady of Vladimir   

  17th-18th century.  5.6 x 8 cm.
   Center panel of three-leaf skladen.
   With vernicle.
OB 1013

The Consecrators:   
 Alfansy and Vlasy   

   17th-18th century.  9 x 12.7 cm.
   Center panel of  three-leaf skladen.
OB 1014

Mother of God:     


17th-18th century.  5.2 x 6.6 cm.
   Both figures have tsatas.
OB  1015

Virgin of Kazan    


   18th century.  6.3 x 10.2 cm.
OB 1016


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Imagi Gallery