Author Archive

Moštanica monastery, Bosnia and Herzegovina

May 13, 2011
December 31, 1994, Sc #39

December 31, 1994, Sc #39

According to monumental dimensions, from the architectonic decoration point of view, a very magnificent structure of Moštanica church is one of the most courageous and beautiful sacral buildings in the Serb medieval architecture. In its, at least 500-year long history, and according to extremely courageous, harmonious and gorgeous church architecture, Moštanica monastery belongs to those culture monuments that characterize the highest level of Serb people’s creativity under the wing of the Serb Orthodox church. Moštanica monastery is registered as a culture monument of the 2nd category in 1951, and is under protection measures regulated by the Law on Protection of Cultural-Historic Heritage of B&H. It is one of the oldest monasteries in Bosanska Krajina, hidden in Kozara, next to the rivulet with the same name – Moštanica, 12 km east from Kozarska Dubica. According to one legend, the monastery is the endowment of the Nemanjić’s, and according to the other, it was built in 1113 at the site of death of St Theodor Tyron.

There is one legend widely known stating that Moštanica was built by Hasan-Pasha Predojević in the 16th century. According to the same legend, the Pasha built Rmanj monastery and donated it to his brother, monk Gavrilo. Like many other monasteries, Moštanica monastery had a troubled past – it was destroyed and reconstructed nine times.
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Zitomislic Monastery, Bosnia and Herzegovina

May 13, 2011
Desember 28, 1994, Sc #38

Desember 28, 1994, Sc #38

Zitomislic (Žitomislić Serbian: Житомислић) is а monastery of the Serb Orthodox Church located near Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina. Its church is dedicated to the Annunciation of the Mother of God.
In 1566 the Ottoman Empire, as represented by the kadija (qadi) in Nevesinje, granted the Miloradović-Hrabren family a permit to build monastery at Žitomislić over the ruins of an ancient Serbian church. The monastery took more than forty years to complete with the first reference to monks at Žitomislić in 1606. The monastery boasted a highly artistic iconostasis, and housed a scriptorium of considerable activity and renown in its time. At the height of its existence the monastery was supported by large land holdings worked by the monks themselves. Early in the 19th century, the prior Simeon Miljković, took on improvements to the monastery that included guest quarters, local water, and a new vineyard. A seminary was opened in 1858. On June 26, 1941 a detachment of Croat fascists (Ustasha) tortured and killed the monks of Žitomislić and threw their bodies into a pit. The buildings were plundered; the church was razed and the rest of the compound burnt to the ground. The monastery was rebuilt after the war and the bodies of the martyrs were exhumed and placed in a tomb.
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Tavna Monastery, Bosnia and Herzegovina

May 13, 2011
November 28, 1994, Sc #37

Nov. 28, 1994, Sc #37

Monastery Tavna (Serbian: Манастир Тавна or Manastir Tavna) is located in the southern part of the Bijeljina municipality. The date of foundation is hidden somewhere in the shadows of the far past. The cronichles of monasteries Tronosha and Pech say it was built by Dragutin’s sons Vladislav i Urosic. Stefan Dragutin was the King of Serbia from 1276 to 1282 and king of Srem from 1282 to 1316. The present church of monastery Tavna, is built in the same place as the original one. The Tavna Monastery is older than the other monasteries in the region such as Ozrena, Liplja, Vozuce and Gostovica. Tavna was damaged in the first years of Turkish rule, but was restored by the people. This was not the only time the monastery was damaged. It was damaged many times during the Turkish period and also during World War Two. Between 1941 and 1945 Tavna was bombed by the Ustase. On one of the gravestones it says “Zdravko Jovacnovic Killed 1943 by the Ustasa Blue Division protecting and defending the monastery”. After World War Two Tavna was rebuilt.

Icon the Virgin and Child, Cajnica Church, 1994

May 13, 2011
September 01, 1994, Sc #33

Sep. 01, 1994, Sc #33

Prior to the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1992, more than two thousand icons were housed in Serbian churches in this former Yugoslav republic. With only one exception, all of the icons date from the time of Ottoman rule, i.e. from the fifteenth to the nineteenth centuries, and display a variety of origins and styles within the general framework of post-Byzantine art. Most of them were done by Serbian and Greek icon-painters, although a significant number of Russian, Bulgarian and Romanian icons are also included in the Bosnian collections. With very few exceptions, none of these has ever been reproduced for publication. The only extant example of icon painting in Bosnia dating from pre-Ottoman times is the processional icon the Virgin and Child painted on one side, and of St. John the Baptist on the other. Popularly known as the Čajniče Beauty and deemed miraculous, the icon comes from the Church of the Dormition in Čajniče, a traditional place of pilgrimage. It is the work of a Byzantine artist in the first half of the fourteenth century. Historians believe that this icon was painted around 1329-1330.

Icon of St. Stefen, 1994

May 13, 2011

January 09, 1994, Sc #28

Saint Stephen (Koine Greek: Στέφανος, Stephanos), the protomartyr of Christianity, is venerated as a saint in the Roman Catholic, Anglican, Lutheran, Oriental Orthodox and Eastern Orthodox Churches. Saint Stephen’s name is derived from the Greek Stephanos, meaning “crown”. Traditionally, Stephen is invested with a crown of martyrdom for Christianity; he is often depicted in art with three stones and the martyrs’ palm. In Eastern Christian iconography, he is shown as a young beardless man with a tonsure, wearing a deacon’s vestments, and often holding a miniature church building or a censer. Rembrandt depicted his martyrdom in his work The Stoning of Saint Stephen. According to The Acts of the Apostles Stephen was tried by the Sanhedrin for blasphemy against Moses and God (Acts 6:11) and speaking against the Temple and the Law (Acts 6:13-14).

While on trial, he experienced a theophany in which he saw both God the Father and God the Son:
“Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.” (Acts 7:56)
Acts 6-7 describe his trial. He was stoned to death (c. A.D. 34–35) by an infuriated mob encouraged by Saul of Tarsus. Stephen’s final speech was presented as accusing the Jews of persecuting prophets who spoke out against their sins:
“Which one of the Prophets did your fathers not persecute, and they killed the ones who prophesied the coming of the Just One, of whom now, too, you have become betrayers and murderers.” (7:52)

Symbol of St. John, the Evangelist, definitive 1993

May 13, 2011

August 16, 1993, Sc #27What is the symbol for St John the Evangelist? It is an Eagle, depicted with a halo around it’s head. John’s Gospel is considered “lofty” and “soaring to great heights” because it reflects High Christology, emphasizes the Divine Jesus, uses symbolism, and altogether presents a picture of Christianity focused on the attainment of heaven.

850th anniversary of the Cross of St. Euphrosyne of Polatsk No.80, 81

May 13, 2011

The Cross of St. Euphrosyne of Polotsk is a unique monument of jeweller’s art of ancient Belarus, religious and spiritual treasure of the Belarusians. The Cross was created on request of St. Euphrosyne as an ark for storage of Christian relics by the Polotsk craftsman Lazar Bohsa in 1161. It is made in the form of a six-pointed cross of height 51,5 cm. First the Cross was kept in Polotsk, then from 1929 to 1941 — in Mogilev Regional Museum. In 1941 it disappeared without a trace during the evacuation of the museum. In 1997 Brest artist-jeweler Nikolai Kuzmich made the full-size copy of the Cross, which was сonsecrated and handed over to the Savior and St. Euphrosyne convent in Polotsk.

March 21, 2011, Souvenir sheet No.80

March 21, 2011, Souvenir sheet No.80

March 21, 2011, Souvenir sheet No.81

March 21, 2011, Souvenir sheet No.81

350th anniversary of the icon of Holy Virgin of Borkolabovo, 2009

May 13, 2011
July 24, 2009

July 24, 2009

The icon of Holy Virgin of Borkolabovo was made in the 16th or 17th century. Borkolabovski Nunnery received the wonder-working Holy Virgin icon from Russian Prince Pozharski who stayed here on his way from Lithuania to Russia in 1659. The icon is known for many divine miracles, most of which date back to the Great Northern War and the Patriotic War of 1812. The icon survived several wars, a fire in 1882 and the pressures of atheist ideology in the early 20th century. Now the icon is kept in the wooden Holy Trinity Church in the town of Bykhov. The commemoration of the icon was set on the 24th of July.

Souvenir sheet

Souvenir sheet

Souvenir sheet Bells of Belarus, 2007

May 13, 2011

Subchime bell. XVIII century. 2500 BYR. The bell is in the belfry of the Temple of the Nativity of Jesus Christ in the village of Stiklevo of Minsk region.

December 07, 2007, Sc #639

December 07, 2007, Sc #639

1020th Anniversary of the Christening of Russia, 2008

May 13, 2011

1500 BYR (1) Holy Virgin of Iljinsk and Chernigov. The icon Holy Virgin of Iljinsk Chernigov, the 18th century, is from the Greek St. Catherine monastery in Kiev. Now it is kept in the collection of the National Kiev-Pechersk Historic-Cultural Preserve.

1500 BYR (2) Christ Pantocrator. The icon Holy Virgin of Iljinsk Chernigov, the 18th century, is from the Greek St. Catherine monastery in Kiev. Now it is kept in the collection of the National Kiev-Pechersk Historic-Cultural Preserve.

1500 BYR (3) Grand Prince Vladimir from the Deesis row. Grand Prince Vladimir from the Deesis row, the 15th century. It was in the collection of I. S. Ostroukhov. Now it is kept in the collection of the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow.

October 25, 2008, Sc #677

October 25, 2008, Sc #677