The British Museum has been beefing up their online research catalog offerings as of late, and this particular work contains 72 of the Museum's Russian icons. To gain a sense of the context and history of this collection, visitors can start by reading the short "Preface". After this, a basic understanding of the Russian icon and its purpose can be found in the "Meaning and history of icons" essay. One sentence in that piece sums things up nicely, as it notes "at all times the icon remained an image of the eternal, a just and wonderful divine world, beckoning to itself all those who find within themselves the spiritual strength to perceive this world with their interior gaze." Moving on, "The British Museum Collection" area provides some perspective on the Museum's collecting philosophy for such works, along with some novel images of the icons. Finally, clicking on the "All objects" area will reveal thumbnail sketches of all the icons. Visitors should not miss "St. Nicholas the Wonder-Worker" from the mid-16th century or "Sophia-Divine Wisdom".
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