Royal doors

Type: Plastic iconographical object: Royal doors

Period: 1561 year

Author: Unknown

Dimmensions (cm): 141 / 90


Country: Bulgaria

Province: Sofia

Town: Sofia

Museum: National History Museum


Country: Bulgaria

Other source: Others

Object identification notes

The royal doors are a simple profiled frame in red and golden with a lily on the top. The Annunciation is on the plane of the two wings, on golden background.


The scene sticks to the traditional iconography formula that was established in Byzantium in the 11th century. Virgin Mary sits on a blue pillow on a golden stool in the foreground. She wears a blue chiton and brown maphorion. She holds a spindle in one of her hands and her other hand points at the Holy Spirit. A humble inscription behind her lists the donors and the year of execution. The Archangel Gabriel is a full-size figure depicted on the other wing of the door. He looks at Virgin Mary. He wears a blue chiton, an ochre himation and a dark-blue cloak with playful drapes. His spread wings are brown; the inside of the wings is red; the feathers are caligraphically painted. One of the feet is prominently drawn forward which makes the posture dashing and dynamic. Conventional architecture with a velum rolled is behind the two figures. The roofs are in three levels, painted in blue and red. The architectural form ends in front with steps and high ancient columns with detailed bases and capitals. Small waist-long figures of the Old Testament kings Solomon and David (with crowns on their heads and open scrolls in their hands) look from behind the conventional architecture.

Iconographical technique: Tempera

Base material: Wood