A hand carved mother of pearl "icon" from the early to mid Twentieth Century, skillfully carved and assembled by Christians in the Old Holy Land. Researching this icon I found that this mother of pearl craft was done by Eastern Orthodox Christians in Jerusalem and Bethlehem called "Melchites" I have seen the lovely mother of pearl jewellery from the same people or their descendents and I have also owned a magnificent mother of pearl covered table cross. This piece took my breath away. The details, the skillful carving, the old mother of pearl , which has so much more depth and tone and quality than the modern variety. The mother of pearl is carved into an unusual representation of the "Last Supper". Jesus is seated at a long mother of pearl table, with six apostles on either side of him. They are celebrating the Last Supper in a wonderful three dimensional room all lined with mother of pearl and abalone, the walls, the curtains , even the lamp hanging in the center, from the ceiling. The icon has the look of an antique stage ,where a great drama is being acted out , with curtains and backdrop. These lovely icons were made for pilgrims to the Holy Land to bring back from the Grand Tour, from the early 1830's right through to the mid Twentieth Century. This piece is probably from the first half of the Twentieth Century. The box is made of olive wood . It can be placed on a table or hung from a nail ( see back where wire is attached). The piece is in excellent condition. Everything is there , except for one piece of mother of pearl in the bottom left hand corner, which has been lost in time. ( see photograph) The icon measures 10 & 3/4 inches high, 9 & 1/2 inches wide and 2 & 1/4 inches deep. I will charge a fixed price for shipping with UPS for this wonderful icon. It will be wrapped carefully by UPS professionals and shipped insured to any destination.
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