Small icon with a representation of Archangel Michael

A small steatite icon with a representation of a full-bodied Archangel Michael, as confirmed by the inscription. He is carved in low relief, turned slightly to the right, wearing imperial robes and raising his hands in a posture of supplication. On the (viewer’s) right is a colonette with a pinecone capital. The details of the clothing, wings and face are incised. Unlike ivory, steatite permits neither deep relief nor detailed carving, and the forms are very linear as a result. The icon probably also included other figures on the left which have now been lost. In a similar icon held in the Louvre, Archangels Michael and Gabriel flank a representation of the Preparation of the Throne (Hetoimasia). The icon in the Canellopoulos Museum may have originally depicted a similar scene.

Chalkia E. 2007. Catalogue no. 92, in Skampavias K.—Chatzidakis N. (eds), Paul and Alexandra Canellopoulos Museum. Byzantine and Post-Byzantine Art, Athens, 99.