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Christ, Theotokos, and Saint Joseph "Supplication" (Deësis) Icon - S450

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Christ is at the center, with His right hand raised in a gesture of priestly blessing. He holds a scroll in His left hand. He is robed in gold and bright red, symbolizing divinity. He is depicted as a youth, a form known as Christ Emmanuel ("God with us").

His Mother, the Most Holy Theotokos, stands at His right (Psalm 44/45:9). Her hand is raised in a gesture of worship. She is robed in a blue robe, a color of humanity, and a red cloak, a color of divinity; this symbolizes her role in uniting the two in her womb through the Incarnation. The cross-shaped stars on her head and shoulders represent the doctrine of Mary's ever-virginity: before, during, and after birth.

Saint Joseph the Betrothed served as Christ's earthly father figure. He is depicted as an old man, in accordance with Church tradition. (He was a widower, and took Mary as his betrothed after she left the Temple.) His inner robe is green, another color of humanity, and his outer cloak is white, representing his righteousness and his purity with respect to the Theotokos. (He had no relations or children with her; Christ's "brothers and sisters" were Joseph's children from his first marriage. For this reason, he is not shown touching the Theotokos.)

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