Andrew Rublev

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Icon of Saint Andrei Rublev

Saint Andrei Rublev (1360? - January 29, 1430) is considered one of the greatest iconographers of all time. He lived in Russia and was also a monk. His feast day is July 4.

Life and works

Though very few details of his life are known, tradition does give a basic outline. Andrei (commonly Andrew in English) went to a monastery, called Holy Trinity Monastery, at a young age and grew up there. He was greatly influenced by St Sergius of Radonezh, the igumen of the monastery.

Eventually Andrei decided to become a monk, and with the blessing of the new igumen of his monastery traveled to another, the Spaso-Andronikov Monastery, founded by St Andronicus (June 13). There he was tonsured a monk and began to study iconography under Theophanes the Greek and a monk named Daniel.

The first known reference to his work appeared in 1405, when he is said to have written icons and frescoes in the Cathedral of the Annunciation in Moscow with Theophanes and another iconographer named Prochorus. In 1408 he and Daniel, his fellow monastic, painted frescoes in the Dormition Cathedral in Vladimir. Finally, he and Daniel were asked to paint the new church of Holy Trinity Monastery, where Andrei had grown up, after the monastery was destroyed by Tatars in 1408. This was about the time that he painted the only surviving icon credited as entirely his work - the Trinity, or Hospitality of Abraham.

Andrei Rublev reposed at Andronikov Monastery on January 29, 1430. He was canonized by the Church in 1988.

Selected icons

Rublev's most famous icon depicts the three angels who appeared to Abraham and Sarah. The angels are considered a type of the Holy Trinity; accordingly, this scene is the only one in which iconographers are allowed to depict God the Father.
  • Ascension of Christ (ca. 1408)
  • Theotokos of Vladimir (ca. 1405)
  • Christ the Redeemer (ca. 1410)
  • Apostle Paul (ca. 1410s)

See Wikimedia Commons: Category:Andrej Rublëv for images.