|Icon of Saints Alexander Nevsky, Titus and Polycarpus
Ovchinnikov Manufactory, Moscow
Tempera on panel; silver, enamel, gilt; diamonds, pearls
128 x 55 cm
The icon was presented to Emperor Alexander II to commemorate his escape from an attempt on his life by a Narodnik (Populist) terrorist, Alexander Solovyov, on April 2, 1879. Alexander Nevsky, depicted in the icon, was the patron saint of Alexander II. April 2, the day of Alexander II's salvation, is the day when the Orthodox Church commemorates Saints Titus and Polycarpus.
Titus (9th century), a miracle-worker and saint. As a monk and ascetic from his youth, at the Studion Monastery in Byzantium, he was noted for his gentleness and kindness.
Polycarpus (4th century), a saint who was martyred in Alexandria during the reign of the Roman Emperor Maximilian, ruler of Syria and Egypt, known for his fierce struggle against Christians.