RARE c.16-18th CENTURY SILVER ORTHODOX "OLD BELIEVERS" ORNATE "SUN" CROSS

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Seller: Top-Rated Seller godblessyou21 (882) 100%, Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Ships to: US & many other countries, Item: 202617543602 Rare, well preserved Orthodox Cross pendant featuring the traditional "Old Believers" ornate design with a combination of ancient symbols, such as the Suppedaneum (three-bar) and Saint Andrew's (X-shaped or "Saltire") Crosses, and the Crescent (half-moon) symbol known as "Tsata". Origin likely c. 16th- early 18th century Tsardom of Russia. The Cross appears to be handmade of unmarked silver alloy likely containing silver and copper; was acid-tested positive for the presence of silver (please see the pictures). It is mildly worn off according to its age, has superficial scratches and small dents, and is covered with patches of silver patina. The inside of the solid necklace bale shows signs of wear consistent with long continuous wearing. The size and weight of the pendant are shown on the photographs. Authentic antique symbol of late medieval Orthodox Christianity.The absence of a hallmark on Russian Imperial silver jewelry was not unusual before year 1700 when Tsar (King) Peter I the Great of Russia issued his "Ukaz" (Decree) making the Russian standardized hallmarking mandatory for the master makers using precious metals, gold and silver. Tsar Peter I's Decree ("Silver Assay Charter") ordered the items made by silversmiths to four standard grades of silver purity: 62, 84, 90 and 96 "zolotniki" (ancient Russian weight measure).The obverse of the cross pendant bears an image of the three-bar Suppedaneum cross. The Byzantine three-bar cross is venerated 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 center of the cross bears a crescent, or half-moon symbol known as "Tsata". It is a traditional, ancient Byzantine symbol of Christ as both the King and the High Priest. The crossbar ends bear "boxed" shapes incorporating abbreviated inscriptions made in Church Slavonic. The letters are worn off but at least in part, identifiable. The top end of the vertical crossbar incorporates an abbreviated inscription meaning "KING OF GLORY" used in the Eastern Orthodox pectoral crosses as a nameplate in their top part. The "boxed" shapes in the side ends of the central 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. The bottom end has the Greek "NIKA" ("VICTORIOUS") symbol made in abbreviated Cyrillic form as "HKA", an ancient symbol of Christ's victory achieved on the Cross. The center of the cross is surrounded by a circle similar to a "Solar", or a "Sun", or a Celtic cross. There are four additional, diagonal crossbeams symbolizing the cross of Saint Andrew the Apostle. Alternatively, they might symbolize the rays of light coming from the glorious Holy Cross of the Savior. 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 is decorated with a sophisticated floral or vine-like ornament likely symbolizing the life-giving nature of the Christian Cross, and also referring to the preaching of Christ: "I am the vine; you are the branches" (John 15:5). The ornament incorporates a larger "diamond" or rhomboid shape positioned in the centerpiece. The "diamond" or "lozenge" motif dates as far back as the Neolithic and Paleolithic period in Eastern Europe, and represented a sown field and female fertility. The ancient lozenge pattern often shows up in Diamond vault architecture, in traditional dress patterns of Slavic peoples, and in traditional Ukrainian embroidery. The lozenge pattern also appears extensively in Celtic art. 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 original 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: Rare, well preserved Orthodox Cross pendant featuring the traditional "Old Believers" ornate design with a combination of ancient symbols, such as the Suppedaneum (three-bar) and Saint Andrew's (X-shaped or "Saltire") Crosses, and the Crescent (half-moon) symbol known as "Tsata". Origin likely c. 16th- early 18th century Tsardom of Russia. The Cross appears to be handmade of unmarked silver alloy likely containing silver and copper; was acid-tested positive for the presence of silver (please see the pictures). It is mildly worn off according to its age, has superficial scratches and small dents, and is covered with patches of silver patina. The inside of the solid necklace bale shows signs of wear consistent with long continuous wearing. The size and weight of the pendant are shown on the photographs. Authentic antique symbol of late medieval Orthodox Christianity., Country/Region of Manufacture: Unknown, Material: Solid silver alloy; acid-tested, Featured Refinements: Ancient Orthodox Cross, Type: Pendant

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