Iconostasis


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Iconostasis

 

in a Russian Orthodox church, a partition with icons that divides the main part of the interior from the altar. Previously, the interior was divided by a low altar fence with icons placed above it. The iconostasis has been known in its most developed form (high iconostasis) since the beginning of the 15th century. An example is the iconostasis of the Blagovesh-chenskii Cathedral (the Kremlin, Moscow, 1405; with icons by Theophanes the Greek, Andrei Rublev, and Prokhor from Goro-dets).

A strict religious hierarchy of subjects determines the overall composition of an iconostasis. At the bottom is a row of local icons. Above them are the Deesis register, the festivals register, and the prophets register. This hierarchy is emphasized by the height of each row and the proportions of the individual icons. The rhythm, color structure, and symmetrical arrangement of the icons also are expressions of the hierarchical composition.

The paintings of an iconostasis and the wooden frame with gilded fretwork, which was particularly magnificent in the 17th century, form an artistic whole. Several iconostases of the 18th and early 19th century were constructed in the form of triumphal arches with wooden statues and served as exultant entrances to the altar (for example, the iconostasis of the Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul in Leningrad, wood, 1722–27; engraving by T. Ivanov and I. Telega, based on a drawing by I. Zarudnyi).

REFERENCES

Drevnerusskoe iskusstvo. Moscow, 1970. Pages 29–72.
Lazarev, V. N. Russkaia srednevekovaia zhivopis’. Moscow, 1970. Pages128–39.

iconostasis

A screen in a Greek Orthodox church, on which icons are placed, separating the chancel from the space open to the laity.
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The most important of these was the provision of an Iconostasis and Icons for the Iconostasis and for the Church.
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But the worshippers fixed their eyes instead on an older kind of screen: a 24-foot-high, hand-carved Hungarian iconostasis, made of wood and gold, displaying recently restored icons.
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The iconostasis makes 'windows' in it, through which one can see what takes place beyond it--'the living witnesses of God.
He is the author of Olha Kobylianska: Interpretations (2008) and Canon and Iconostasis (1997), as well as numerous articles and chapters on modern and contemporary Ukrainian literature.
An iconostasis from the sixteenth century, a bishop's throne and pulpit intricately worked in gold leaf from the eighteenth century, and gravestones from the nineteenth century make it clear that Orthodox Christianity was practiced openly throughout the Ottoman period.
This grouping is important because the four central windows contain images of iconic medieval Hungarian royal saints and my contention is that the panels, when taken together with those above and below them, as well as the location of the window ensemble, can be perceived to act as a lay form of iconostasis.