The theme of the Dormition is reﬂected in the ﬁve icons from the collection of the National Museum of History of Moldova. Feast of the Dormition of the Mother of God, falling on August 15, is celebrated for a long time; according to some sources, it was oﬃcially established in 582. The canonical composition of the icons of the Theotokos was formed after the restoration of the veneration of icons, when the Church overcome heresy and consolidated the basic theological provisions. Initially the scenes were laconic, with a small number of characters; thereafter these iconographic compositions develop into complex patterns with a variety of characters and attributes. Icons of the Dormition from the museum's collection belong to the 18th early 20th centuries, and most of them represent the traditional iconographic patterns arranged both horizontally and vertically.
Retaining in their compositions the characteristic features of the earlier representations the Mother of God on Her deathbed surrounded by the Apostles, the image of the Savior with the soul of His Blessed Mother in His arms, surrounded by angels, painters at the same time introduced elements of more recent origin, or some details less characteristic of this iconographic model. Two such compositions reminiscent of the famous icon from the Dormition Church of the Kiev Pechersk Lavra and reproduce the pattern of so-called icons-reliquaries, takes us back to the early icons with special recesses for storage Marian relics, to the churches of Blachernae and Kalkoprateya in Constantinople, where such objects were kept. Other compositions include the scene with Jewish high priest Athonias and an angel with a drawn sword, shoes of the Mother of God, or a burning candle.
The collection has an icon reminiscent of the Gethsemane Shroud of the Mother of God, which was popular in Russia in the 19th century. The composition of another museum's icon does not include the image of the Savior holding a baby the distinctive elements of this iconographic type. Icons of the Dormition from the museum's collection are of medium size, only one is large this is the icon, which decorated a temple dedicated to the feast of Dormition. The museum's icons of Dormition included in the recently published catalog of the Marian icons of the 17th-20th centuries, not only demonstrate the original interpretation of the images and decorations but also provide researchers the opportunity to familiarize themselves with a little studied collection of Marian icons that can complement existing sources in the area, as well as data about the temples, from which these icons came, or personalities related to their history.
List of illustrations:
Fig. 1. Dormition of the Mother of God. Ivory plaque, late 10th early 11th c. The State Hermitage Museum, Saint Petersburg (https://www.nsad.ru/pic/3_1346080545.jpg).
Fig. 2. Dormition of the Mother of God. Ivory plaque, late 10th c. The Metropolitan Museum, New York (https:// www.nsad.ru/pic/1_1346080351.jpg).
Fig. 3. Dormition of the Mother of God (carved ivory). Rostov Veliky. Museum of Church Antiquities (https://mariamagdalina.ru/?p=8057).
Fig. 4. Dormition of the Mother of God. Rome, 13th c. The Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore (https://www.pravoslavie.ru/sas/image/100728/72899.b.jpg).
Fig. 5. Dormition of the Mother of God (carved ivory). Constantinople, 10th c. The Worcester Art Museum (Massachusetts) (https://www.ikonostas.in.ua/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/00009.jpg)
Fig. 6. Fresco "Dormition of the Mother of God". Serbia, SopoФani, 13th c. (https://www.pravmir.ru/wp-content/ uploads/2013/08/0108.jpg).
Fig. 7. Dormition of the Mother of God. A cave church of Göreme, Turkey, 11th c. (https://www.taday.ru/ data/2011/08/28/1233394130/01_Gioreme_Kappadokija_11v.jpg).
Fig. 8. Dormition of the Mother of God. The Transﬁguration Cathedral of the Mirozhsky Monastery in Pskov, mid12th c. (https://interestingeventsclub.uol.ua/text/3730919/).
Fig. 9. Fresco "Dormition of the Mother of God". St. Nicholas Church, Curtea de Argeș, 14th c. (https://madalinfocsa.ﬁles.wordpress.com/2010/05/fresca.jpg).
Fig. 10. Dormition of the Mother of God. The Hospital Church of the Hurezi Monastery, 17th c. (https://ro.wikipedia. org/wiki/Biserica_Bolni%C8%9Bei_M%C4%83n%C4%83stirii_Hurezi#/media/File:RO_VL_Romanii_de_ Jos_Hurezi_monastery_5.jpg).
Fig. 11. Dormition of the Mother of God. Russia, late 18th early 19th c. (NMHM, FB-22918-42).
Fig. 12. Icon "Dormition of the Mother of God" from the Kiev Pechersk Lavra, early 19th c. (NMHM, FB-23384-109). Fig. 13. Icon "Dormition of the Mother of God" from the Kiev Pechersk Lavra, 1885 г. Lithograph from the original of the 11th c. (https://fakty.ua/138804-kogda-s-vysoty-cerkovnyh-svodov-opuskalas-ikona-uspeniya-prihozha-
Fig. 14. Dormition of the Mother of God. Miniature from the Gospel of the Emperor Nicephorus II Phocas, 11th c. (https://www.pravmir.ru/wp-content/uploads/2012/08/0081.jpg).
Fig. 15. Icon "Dormition of the Mother of God" from the Kiev Pechersk Lavra, 19th c. (NMHM, FB-23384-33).
Fig. 16. Dormition of the Mother of God the Shroud of Gethsemane, Russia, 19th c., St. Athanasius Church, Etulia (Vulcănești) (NMHM, FB-22918-73).
Fig. 17. The Gethsemane Shroud of the Mother of God. Jerusalem, 19th c. (https://alchevskpravoslavniy.ru/wpcontent/uploads/2012/10/16.jpg).
Fig. 18. Dormition of the Mother of God. Jerusalem, 1868 г. (https://ippo.ru/img/palom/pl_9.jpg).
Fig. 19. Dormition of the Mother of God. Bessarabia, 19th c., the Dormition Church, Copceac (Comrat) (NMHM, FB-22918-203).
Fig. 20. Dormition of the Mother of God. Ivory medallion, Greece, 15th c. Victoria and Albert Museum, London (https://mariamagdalina.ru/?p=8057).