Icon: Sts Zosima and Savvaty with the Solovetsky Monastery | S-5
Origin Northern Russia
Period : second half 17th century
Size : 30.7 x 25.5 cm
Private collection Germany
The Solovetsky monastery, situated on a rocky island, is represented on the icon with its churches, bell towers, icons and relics. On the foreground, fishes and a swan are swimming in the water. In the centre, the two monks Zosima and Savvaty raise their hands in prayer towards the Mandylion of Christ. Behind, two monks ring the bells of the bell towers. To the left and to the right, an icon of the Mother of God Umilenie and an icon of St Nicholas are shown. Close to the icon of the Mother of God, the relics of the two saints lying in their tombs, are depicted.   

Sts Zosima (d. 1478) and Savvati (d.1435) were the founders of the famous Solovetsky monastery on an island in the White Sea. Savvaty together with another monk, German (d. 1479), was the first to settle the uninhabited island in 1428. Zosima arrived after Savvaty’s death in 1435, when he began the construction of a church and monastery to which he moved Savvaty’s body. Zosima subsequently became the first abbot of the monastery.