The Tale of Peter and Fervoniia: The Text and the Icon

The Tale of Peter and Fervoniia: The Text and the Icon

By Priscilla Hunt

Elementa, Vol.3 (1997)

Introduction: The enigmatic Tale of Peter and Fevroniia brings us face to face with the problem of how to read a medieval Russian text. We have certain clues which are frequently not available in medieval Slavic tradition. Scholars have identified its author as Ermolai Erazm, a monk serving in one of the Kremlin cathedrals under the direction of Metropolitan Macarius. R.P. Dmtrieva believes he wrote the tale shortly after Peter and Fevroniia’s canonization in 1547. She has classified and published is an authorial version of the texts as well as its variants. The author provided the tale both with a theological introduction, presenting the protagonists as saints and a concluding oration which ends with a prayer for their intercession. A rich tradition of miniatures ilustrates manuscripts of the tale and served as the basis of an iconographic tradition portraying the saints.

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