By illuminating their monuments in blue, they committed to uphold the rights of childhood and remind the public of their common history of protection, care, support and research for children all over the world on the anniversary of the adoption of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child CRC. The Istituto is world-renowned a jewel of architecture and art but above all a symbol of what Florence always was and is:
Such images functioned as powerful relics as well as icons, and their images were naturally seen as especially authoritative as to the true appearance of the subject: Like icons believed to be painted directly from the live subject, they therefore acted as important references for other images in the tradition.
Beside the developed legend of the mandylion or Image of Edessawas the tale of the Veil of Veronicawhose very name signifies "true icon" or "true image", the fear of a "false image" remaining strong.
St Peter encaustic on panelc. Although there are earlier records of their use, no panel icons earlier than the few from the 6th century preserved at the Greek Orthodox Saint Catherine's Monastery in Egypt survive,  as the other examples in Rome have all been drastically over-painted.
The surviving evidence for the earliest depictions of Christ, Mary and saints therefore comes from wall-paintings, mosaics and some carvings. They are broadly similar in style, though often much superior in quality, to the mummy portraits done in wax encaustic and found at Fayyum in Egypt.
As we may judge from such items, the first depictions of Jesus were generic rather than portrait images, generally representing him as a beardless young man. It was some time before the earliest examples of the long-haired, bearded face that was later to become standardized as the image of Jesus appeared.
When they did begin to appear there was still variation. Augustine of Hippo  said that no one knew the appearance of Jesus or that of Mary.
However, Augustine was not a resident of the Holy Land and therefore was not familiar with the local populations and their oral traditions. Gradually, paintings of Jesus took on characteristics of portrait images. At this time the manner of depicting Jesus was not yet uniform, and there was some controversy over which of the two most common icons was to be favored.
The first or "Semitic" form showed Jesus with short and "frizzy" hair; the second showed a bearded Jesus with hair parted in the middle, the manner in which the god Zeus was depicted. Theodorus Lector remarked  that of the two, the one with short and frizzy hair was "more authentic".
To support his assertion, he relates a story excerpted by John of Damascus that a pagan commissioned to paint an image of Jesus used the "Zeus" form instead of the "Semitic" form, and that as punishment his hands withered.
Though their development was gradual, we can date the full-blown appearance and general ecclesiastical as opposed to simply popular or local acceptance of Christian images as venerated and miracle-working objects to the 6th century, when, as Hans Belting writes,  "we first hear of the church's use of religious images.
However, the earlier references by Eusebius and Irenaeus indicate veneration of images and reported miracles associated with them as early as the 2nd century. What might be shocking to our contemporary eyes may not have been viewed as such by the early Christians.
Almost everything within the image has a symbolic aspect. Christ, the saints, and the angels all have halos.
Angels and often John the Baptist have wings because they are messengers. Figures have consistent facial appearances, hold attributes personal to them, and use a few conventional poses.
Colour plays an important role as well. Gold represents the radiance of Heaven; red, divine life. Blue is the color of human life, white is the Uncreated Light of God, only used for resurrection and transfiguration of Christ.
If you look at icons of Jesus and Mary: Jesus wears red undergarment with a blue outer garment God become Human and Mary wears a blue undergarment with a red overgarment human was granted gifts by Godthus the doctrine of deification is conveyed by icons.
Letters are symbols too. Most icons incorporate some calligraphic text naming the person or event depicted. Even this is often presented in a stylized manner.
Miracles[ edit ] Our Lady of St. Theodorea copy of the 11th-century icon, following the same Byzantine "Tender Mercy" type as the Vladimirskaya above. In the Eastern Orthodox Christian tradition there are reports of particular, Wonderworking icons that exude myrrh fragrant, healing oilor perform miracles upon petition by believers.
When such reports are verified by the Orthodox hierarchy, they are understood as miracles performed by God through the prayers of the saint, rather than being magical properties of the painted wood itself. Theologically, all icons are considered to be sacred, and are miraculous by nature, being a means of spiritual communion between the heavenly and earthly realms.
However, it is not uncommon for specific icons to be characterised as "miracle-working", meaning that God has chosen to glorify them by working miracles through them. Such icons are often given particular names especially those of the Virgin Maryand even taken from city to city where believers gather to venerate them and pray before them.
Islands like that of Tinos are renowned for possessing such "miraculous" icons, and are visited every year by thousands of pilgrims.
Eastern Orthodox teaching[ edit ] A fairly elaborate Orthodox Christian icon corner as would be found in a private home. The Eastern Orthodox view of the origin of icons is generally quite different from that of most secular scholars and from some in contemporary Roman Catholic circles: Thus accounts such as that of the miraculous "Image Not Made by Hands", and the weeping and moving "Mother of God of the Sign" of Novgorod are accepted as fact:See Dell, WL , at *13; DFC, A.3d at  8 Del.
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