Sharp Gate Madonna Silver Plated Icon #2 (Matka Boska Ostrobramska)
This spectacular silver plated icon is handmade in Poland and displayed in a very attractive wooden silver frame with a burgondy velvet background. The back of the religious icon comes affixed with a triangle hanger for easy wall mounting.
Silver Plated Icon Measures approx: 6.13" W x 7.0" H x 0.8" D
Legend has it that this icon or image was brought to Vilnius (Wilno, Vilna) after a battle in the Crimea by Olgierd (Algirdas), the Grand Duke of Lithuania, as a present for his wife who was an Eastern Orthodox Christian. It later came into the possession of the Byzantine-Slav Catholics. After they were "abolished" by Catherine II of Russia, it came into the possession of the Polish Carmelites. Now it has been reclaimed by the Lithuanians, though church services are still held regularly in Polish and Lithuanian at the shrine. As such it is venerated, by several nations, Poles, Lithuanians, Belarussians, Russians and Ukrainians, Catholics and Orthodox. It also has many names, including the Latin "Mater Misericordiae" (Mother of Mercy) and Old Church Slavonic "Umilenie" (Tenderness). In the eastern custom it is housed in a little chapel over the entry to the city gate to protect the city known as Ostrobrama or the Sharp Gate in Polish and Ausros Vartu or Dawn Gate, in Lithuanian because it faces east on the roads to Moscow and Polotzk. It is said that during World War II, a number of Jews were saved, hidden behind the altar of the Madonna. It is much beloved by all the inhabitants of cosmopolitan Vilnius, (Wilno, Vilna) one city with three names, but one heart.