This 15th century Greek icon depicts the Nativity of Christ, with several related scenes.
The Virgin Mary is depicted resting beside her newborn Son. The cave imagery recalls icons of the Resurrection, reminding the viewer that our salvation was wrought through the entirety of Christ's life, not just one part of it. The ox and donkey beside him represent the worship of the entire human race, Jews and Gentiles alike. The magi are visible on the left, and the shepherds on the right. Also visible is the elder Joseph, who is being tempted by the devil to leave his betrothed. Filling the heavens are the angels, praising God and proclaiming the good news of great joy.
This beautiful, vibrant icon is full of detail. This reminder of our Lord's humanity and incarnation is a fitting reminder for the whole year, and not only the Christmas season.
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