Sometimes things just fall right. Last week I had a look on Ebay to see if any new Athos items were for sale. Usually you can find some old books or etchings. This time my attention was drawn to an Athos icon. It is very seldom that authentic Athos icons are for sale on Ebay. When I took a closer look I was surprised to see that this icon was for sale in Amsterdam, my home town!
The icon was offered by a Dutch (photo) journalist and Athos fan Paul Robert, who visited Athos in 1976, and bought this icon when he visited Skiti Anna (Paul lives only two kilometers from my adress!!).
Although the artistic quality of the icon is not high, the scene of st George and his dragon is classical and it has its own caracter because of its primitive style.
He bought this icon on his first trip to Mount Athos in 1982 and when we talked about it, it showed out that he published his experience in a Dutch magazine called Plaatwerk, that I showed you in post 861 and 862. He was the one who – together with his friend and journalist Rolf Bos – found the glass-negatives in the Roussikon photo atelier!
The icon was painted by a monk of Agia Anna, who did a good job by packing it in for transport and secure it by nailing wooden rods around the icon. The result is that the icon has been slightly damaged.
The text on the bottem is not clear to me: “E.ch Ane..niou (?) m. Agiou Oros”: “The text on the icon means “Work of Antonios monk [of] Agion Oros” (in Greek: Erg. Antoniou m. Agios Oros – thanks Vasilis!).
Paul shared some of his publications with me, which I will show to you in the near future. His plan is to returne the original glass-plate negatives to Mount Athos (Simonos Petras monastery).
Paul gave me these Athos liturgy books from 1931: