E D U C A T I O N A N D L E C T U R E
Magdalene Grace Deane is available (as her schedule allows) for
educational presentations and lectures on the subject of
Ancient Christian Liturgical Art, Iconography, Theology and Symbolism.
An excerpt from a lecture, "The Iconography and Symbolism of the Holy Spirit":
Holy Sprit is shown here from a detail of an early Byzantine Icon of
"The Holy Trinity". The description of the Holy Spirit,
as a white dove, comes directly from the books of Matthew, Mark and Luke
and is seen in ancient Christian Art as early as the 3rd century. Though we see the depiction of a white dove (carrying an olive
branch) earlier in Christian Art, it is usually attributed to the dove (symbolizing
peace) in the Old Testament account of Noah and the Great Flood. The
depiction of the white dove as the Holy Spirit is attributed to
the book of Mark (1:10) and makes its first appearance in Christian Art
within the event of the Baptism of Christ.
Holy Spirit Dove became more vested in symbolism during the Byzantine
era where it is seen illuminated by a halo and golden rays. The halo
contains a Greek inscription
This inscription is also
seen on the halo of Christ in other icons and bears
witness to God in Rev. 1:8 where
"O" translates as "the [one]" and "ωΝ"
translates as “[who] is". The
White Dove is surrounded by a dual positioning of gradient squares. The
multiple hues of blue represents the heavens. The outer four
points shown on the background square is a formation dedicated to the symbolism
of the 4 Evangelists. These four corners or points are often depicted in
the icon, "Christ Enthroned". All eight corners of the squares
combined, point to the 8th day, an understanding of the Kingdom of God and the life of the world to come."
"ΤΟ ΑΓΙΟΝ ΠΝΕΥΜΑ", THE HOLY SPIRIT