RARE 16-18th CENTURY ORTHODOX "OLD BELIEVERS" ORNATE OPENWORK "SUN" SOLAR CROSS

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Seller: Top-Rated Seller godblessyou21 (866) 100%, Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Ships to: US & many other countries, Item: 202422462869 Unique, well preserved antique Orthodox Cross pendant featuring a rare combination of the traditional "Old Believers" ornate design with the center of the cross surrounded by a circle similar to a "Solar", or a "Sun", or a Celtic cross, and ancient "Sun Wheel" circular symbols incorporated in the crossbar ends on the reverse. Origin likely c. 16th to 18th century Imperial Russia. Cast from bronze or similar copper alloy, covered with beautiful original, uncleaned green patina from the past centuries. The obverse of the cross was inlaid with white enamel; partially preserved. The cross is worn out according to its age. One of the side crossbars bears two small openings, likely a metal casting defect, or a later damage. The size of the pendant is shown on the photographs for this listing. Authentic antique symbol of faith, this Cross is a collectible object and is not recommended for wearing because of its potential fragility and unknown chemical composition. The obverse of the cross pendant bears a Byzantine-like Suppedaneum cross. The Byzantine three-bar cross is used in the Eastern Orthodox and some Eastern Catholic churches. Such a cross has three horizontal crossbeams: the top one represents the "INRI" nameplate, and the bottom one, a footrest. The footrest crossbeam is depicted pointing up, toward Heaven, on Christ's right hand side where the Penitent thief, St. Dismas was crucified. The ends of the crossbars are made in the shapes of little hearts, or domes resembling the domes of a Byzantine church. The top three "domes" incorporate round-shaped, "medallion" ornament with an abbreviated inscription inside made in Cyrillic letters, whereas the bottom "dome" bears a symbolic image of the skull, or Adam's head. The upper "dome" bears a worn out two-letter abbreviated inscription likely meaning "KING OF GLORY" used in the Eastern Orthodox pectoral crosses as a nameplate in their top part. The side "domes" of the horizontal crossbar bear the Sacred Name of Jesus Christ inscribed as the Greek Christogram, as the "IC" on the left, and the "XC" on the right. Parallel to the vertical crossbar, there are images of the two Instruments of the Passion (Arms of Christ, Arma Christi), the Holy Lance (spear) of a Roman soldier, and the Holy Sponge attached to the end of a cane or a stick. They are subjects to adoration along with the Cross, and are often depicted on the Byzantine-style "Old Believers" crosses worn as baptism, body crosses by Orthodox Christians. An image of the skull, or Adam's head, below the image of the Suppedaneum cross also refers to Golgotha (Calvary), the elevated site where Jesus was crucified, which the Bible says means "the place of the skull" in Hebrew. An ancient tradition of Catholic and Orthodox Churches held that it was also the burial place of Adam, thus symbolizing the ultimate victory of Christ over sin and death. There are four additional, small circular-shaped "droplets", superimposed on the circle surrounding the center of the cross. Such circles might symbolize the four Wounds of Christ caused by the nails, or four drops of the Most Precious Blood of Christ. The openwork circle around the centerpiece makes the style of this cross close to the Celtic or Northern European "Sun" or "Solar" cross. There are four additional, diagonal crossbeams symbolizing the cross of Saint Andrew the Apostle. St. Andrew is considered the Founder and the first Bishop of the Christian Church of Byzantium, and is the patron saint of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople. Saint Andrew is believed to have been crucified on the Crux decussata (X-shaped cross, also known as "Saltire"). The reverse of the cross bears unique, complex, geometric ornaments incorporating worn out words of a prayer, likely the Orthodox prayer before the Holy Cross. The dome-shaped crossbar ends incorporate a symbol known as "Sun Wheel" or "Sonnenrad", an ancient Norse, Celtic, and Slavic pagan symbol of the Sun. It was often inscribed on wooden monuments built near the burial sites of fallen Slavic warriors to symbolize the Eternal Life. This symbol could be found on pottery, embroidery and other artifacts in most Slavic countries. In Russia, a similar symbol was known as "Kolovrat" (meaning "Spinning Wheel"). Please examine all photographs carefully and do your own research if necessary. Please note that photographs are an important part of the item's description. The U.S. quarter coin, decorative stone, and measuring meter are not for sale, and are photographed with the item in order to provide a size reference. Please ask all questions before making a purchase. There are no guarantees with the listing because most items are authentic vintage or antique objects that are quite old. All items are sold "as is" with no returns because of a change of mind offered. Shipping and handling is free for the continental US. International buyers, please ask me for a shipping quote prior to buying. Please note that customs regulations differ from country to country, and it is a buyer's responsibility to ensure that any customs fees or other duties collected by the buyer's country are paid and satisfied in full. Condition: Used, Condition: Unique, well preserved antique Orthodox Cross pendant featuring a rare combination of the traditional "Old Believers" ornate design with the center of the cross surrounded by a circle similar to a "Solar", or a "Sun", or a Celtic cross, and ancient "Sun Wheel" circular symbols incorporated in the crossbar ends on the reverse. Origin likely c. 16th to 18th century Imperial Russia. Cast from bronze or similar copper alloy, covered with beautiful original, uncleaned green patina from the past centuries. The obverse of the cross was inlaid with white enamel; partially preserved. The cross is worn out according to its age. One of the side crossbars bears two small openings, likely a metal casting defect, or a later damage. The size of the pendant is shown on the photographs for this listing. Authentic antique symbol of faith, this Cross is a collectible object and is not recommended for wearing because of its potential fragility and unknown chemical composition., Country/Region of Manufacture: Unknown, Material: Bronze or similar copper alloy; enamel, Featured Refinements: Orthodox Cross

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