Neck Cross Akimov 101.228 «The Saviour Not-Made-by-Hands. St. George and the Dragon»
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- Silver (925). Gilding (999).
- Miniature relief, casting, gilding, niello, handwork.
"The face of an equilateral cross shows the image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands, the back representing the icon of St. George and the Dragon.
The image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands had always been the greatest sanctuary of Christendom. According to the legend it was miraculously stamped on a piece of canvas which the Lord used for drying His face after washing. The sudarium with the Holy face had been kept in a special ark in Constantinople, in 1204 being seized by crusaders and taken to Europe. For a long time it had by guess been in France. But 1793 the chapel with the relic was ravaged by French revolutionists. Since then the relic destiny had been unknown.
The image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands had always been the greatest sanctuary of Christendom. According to the legend it was miraculously stamped on a piece of canvas which the Lord used for drying His face after washing. For centuries that Image had remained the core, the major, and the most worshipped Christ’s image on pectoral and reliquary crosses, and small icons. On such pieces the cross and Christ’s image had become combined as basic Christian relics left by Christ. They protected the owners both in everyday life and on a battlefield. As a sign of victory and a protecting symbol the image of the Saviour Not Made by Hands had been in Russia also put upon troop standards. Raised up over the troops the Holy Face had been perceived as if a vision of Christ in the sky, predicting victory.
From ancient times the Orthodox Church had seen not only military but as well the spiritual sense in soldierly virtues. According to Paul the Apostle every Christian is a warrior of invisible warfare, who has “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Ephs. 6, 11). In Russia the icon of St. George and the Dragon became the seeable personification of military virtue and victory in the struggle of good and evil.
St. George, the Great Martyr († 303), was a military commander in Rome. был римским военачальник ом. In the years of Diocletian’s persecution against Christians he positioned himself as a believer and voluntarily took incredible torments. На Руси почитание св. Георгия известно уже с XI века. И уже с XII века его стали изображать в образе змееборца и именовать Победоносцем. The icons depicting St. George the Victorious striking the dragon’s chaps with his lance are interpreted as symbolic trample of a sin and as a sign of shunless victory of good over evil, of God over hell forces. In 16th century the image of St. George as a Dragon-Slayer became a part of Russian state symbols. A shield with St. George’s image as a horseman has protected the chest of the Double-headed eagle on the national emblem of Russia. Since 17th century coins with the same image started having been minted. Golden coins with St. George’s image became the first soldiery decoration in Russia. Later St George's Cross became the most honorific Russian award being given only for meritorious combat valour. "
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