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Icon: Three Man Bringing St Nicholas Gifts | S-31
 
 
Origin Greece
Period : 17th century
Size
: 20.2 x 14.7 cm
 

St Nicholas’ zeal for justice is legendary. When the governor Eustace had been bribed to condemn three innocent men, Nicholas appeared in the moment of the execution, stopped the executioner and set the prisoners free. Eustace scolded him, until he later recognized his crime and repented.  On this occasion there were three officials present who, when later themselves in danger of death, prayed to St Nicholas.  The same night the saint appeared in the dreams of emperor Constantine and ordered him to set free those three men. Constantine freed the three man and sent them to St Nicholas with presents and a letter in which he asked him to pray for peace for the world.

The icon, once part of a large vita icon of St Nicholas,in all probability represents this event and shows the three man bowing and presenting gifts to the saint. The inscription reads:  Οι τρεις άνδρες φέροντες δώρα τω Αγίω (The three man bringing the saint gifts).