Mother of God Tricheirousa (the "three-handed", -of Damascus)

Antike original russische Ikone aus dem 19. Jahrhundert.


The famous Greek miraculous icon is celebrated in Russia on June 28 and July 12. 


It is located in the Serbian monastery Hilandari on Mount Athos in Greece. Saint John of Damascus (Dec. 4, d. 777), a pious defender of the icons and city governor of Damascus, was accused of being a traitor by the iconoclast emperor Leon III (717-741) before the Caliph of Damascus. The Caliph had his right hand chopped off and flaunted. That same evening, the saint’s friends asked for the chopped hand and brought it back to John of Damascus.  He held his hand to the sore spot and prayed for his healing in front of the icon of Our Lady. In his sleep, Mary appeared to him and healed his hand by growing it on the stump. In gratitude, John had a silver hand made and attached it as a votive gift to the icon in front of which he had prayed. So from now on one saw a three-handed Mother of God. After the miraculous innocence of John was proven, the Caliph wanted to reintroduce him to his former office, but John went as a monk to Palestine in the Lavra (monastery) of Saint Sawa. There he took “his” icon with him, which was kept and venerated in this monastery until the 13th century. 


At the beginning of the 13th century, Saint Sawa, Archbishop of Serbia (January 12) came to the monastery and received the icon as a gift from the monks. Sawa brought them to Serbia. But because of the unrest there, the icon miraculously fled on the back of a donkey to the Serbian monastery of Hilandari on Mount Athos.

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