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together with the church in Žiča, held the highest place in the hierarchy. inspired by the old see of the archbishopric, the Church of the Holy apostles started to observe the feast of ascension, and sources mention it as the Holy Sav- ior and the Great Church, where the most important arch- bishop’s divine services and rites were held, in addition to the ordination of the highest church dignitaries.
Of the comprehensive thematic sequences from the time of the archbishop Danilo in the narthex, representa- tions have survived devoted to the Mother of God on the surfaces of the southern bays and the space in front of the church. Most of the themes represented relate to her. above the entrance there is a large figure of the Mother of God with outstretched arms, expressing, with the child at her breasts, the idea of the incarnation on a wide, decorated vessel. The mercy of the young Christ blessing with both hands is directed to the archbishop Danilo and St. Nicho- las, whom, as a bishop, the Serbian spiritual leader held in high regard, dedicating a separate church to him on the southern side. On the nearby arches the Old Testament fathers celebrate the Mother of God, thus illustrating the verses of the song “The prophets announced you from the heaven...,” and on the southern wall stands a rare figure of the Virgin nursing the Christ child in her guise of Galakto- trophousa on a wide decorated seat, in front of a ciborium, and angels, freely positioned in space, exalt her.
The Tree of the Serbian royal family occupies the whole height of the eastern wall by the entrance. Below a large portrait of Christ are depicted descendants of St. Simeon Nemanja, five in each of four regularly arranged rows. The stylized vine tendrils encircling their whole figures is not as rich here as it is in other versions; only in places are its curves replaced by portraits of the younger members of the dynasty in small cups, without disturbing the strict general order. in the highest zone of figures below the an- gels—two on each side—lowering crowns for the king and queen, Milutin is depicted in the middle, to the right of him are Stefan Dečanski and his brother Konstantin, and to the left, sons Simeon and Dušan. The noticeable respect paid to King Milutin and the choice of the persons around him indicate that the Tree was painted while Stefan De- čanski was alive, before 1331.
The rest of the painting in the narthex—predominantly dating to 1565—may well repeat the earlier scenes it covers, so that, chances are, in the time of archbishop Danilo most of the wall surfaces were covered by the Calendar, versions of which are also to be seen in somewhat earlier Gračanica and later Dečani.
The Mother of God Hodegetria: painting
The Church of the Mother of God articulates simple, legi- ble and harmoniously arranged religious themes. The words from the psalm extolling Christ as the Lord of the universe are inscribed around his portrait in the dome, the Divine Liturgy is in the lower parts of the dome, a row of prophets
Archbishop Daniel (Danilo) II (1324–1337) with the Prophet Daniel.
a donor portrait in the Church of the Mother of God Hodegetria, the Patriarchate of Peć, ca. 1335
with six-winged seraphims above their heads is between the windows, while the evangelists are on the pendentives on the developed spaces or “interiors” represented with painted architecture, engaged in writing or turned toward the personifications of the wisdom inspiring them.
On the highest parts of the vaults over the arms of the cross are arranged the Great Feasts, while on the lower surfaces of the northern side—Christ’s appearances after the Resurrection; on the southern side are scenes from the life of the Mother of God. in the northwestern part of the nave a rare representation of the Virgin as protectress of the humble and poor on the wall above the sarcophagus of archbishop Danilo belongs to the series of paintings dedi- cated to the patron.
Patriarchate of Peć

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