The Church of St Nicholas in the village of Dolen, Gotse Delchev region Cover Image
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Храмът „Св. Никола” в село Долен, Гоцеделчевско
The Church of St Nicholas in the village of Dolen, Gotse Delchev region

Author(s): Vladimir Dimitrov
Subject(s): Cultural history
Published by: Институт за изследване на изкуствата, Българска академия на науките

Summary/Abstract: The Church of St Nicholas in the village of Dolen, the region of Gotse Delchev, was completed in 1837. On several representations, the years of painting, 1887/88 are inscribed along-side names of donators. The entire interior of the church is painted. The most interesting in the wall-painting programme is the selec- tion of saints, divided into two major groups: warrior saints and female saints. A representation of St Mamante is among the particularities of the murals as the saint is depicted as a warrior rather than as a shepherd, which is quite unusual ichnographically. The icono- graphic programme includes also tradi- tional to Bulgarian monumental painting of the period of the National Revival images of Sts Cyril and Methodius. In additional compartment, the images of some of the most venerated in the Balkans saints are painted: St Modestus, St Spyridon and St Stylianus. The group of the warriors includes St George, St Demetrius, St Procopius, St Theodore Tyro, St Minas, St Eustatius, St Tryphon. Of the female martyr saints, St Catherine, St Nedelia nd St Petka are represented and Michael the Archangel is by the side entrance to the church. Like in the churches in the villages of Teshevo, Zlatolist and Beliovo, The Last Judgement was painted here by the same icon-painters. The iconostasis of the Church of St Nicholas in the village of Dolen has three sections adorned with predominantly floral patterns. Some of the tab- leaux beneath the sovereign tier are oc- cupied by scenes from The Hexameron. The door to the diaconicon features The Victims of Cain and Abel, while the door to the prothesis is occupied by the scene of Archangel Michael wresting the rich man’s soul. The best part of the icons were either lost or moved from their initial places; part of the extant icons in the sovereign tier as well as the small icons are by the same icon-painter, who failed to sign them. There has been an icon of Jesus by Sergy Georgiev in the church, but it is now lost. Though showing some differences compared with the murals of other churches by the same group of icon- painters, judging by the reoccurring subject matters and saints in the programme of this church, I’d reaffirm the assumption made in the book on the brothers icon-painters Minovs that this monument has been painted by the brothers Marco and Theophil and they could have teamed up with their uncle Milos Yakovlev and one of the latter’s sons.

  • Issue Year: 2013
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 26-33
  • Page Count: 8
  • Language: Bulgarian