2.86 The Virgin Glykophilousa (The Lady of the Angels)
Wood, egg tempera, 26.5 x 20 cm
By the hand of Jeremiah
The Virgin is portrayed in the well-known type of the Glykophilousa (The Sweetly-Kissing-One), a type used in fifteenth century Cretan art and surviving throughout the Turkish period (Baltoyianni 1994, p. 17). The Christ Child sits in his mother's arms, as she holds him by his thigh and back. Characteristic features of this type are Christ's bare left leg, the Virgin's mourning mantle drawn tightly round her throat and the closed scroll tied with a purple ribbon that the Child holds with both hands.
The lower border carries the inscription: XYP IEPEMIOY 1685 (By the hand of Jeremiah 1685). Although this name is known to us from the list of painters (Chatzidakis 1987, p. 320), the quality of this work, the careful use of colour and the completeness of the design suggest an earlier date at the beginning of the seventeenth century or even before, as can be seen from other examples of this type. In this case the date could be viewed with suspicion, as in the case of another painter with the same name and the date 1666 (Karakatsani 1980, p. 112).