XVII, 2021, 1

Treasures of Râșca Monastery in Kyiv | p. 123–136

blessing cross, Kyiv, Moldavia, monastery of Râşca, Orthodox Church, Theophanes II of Suceava, Theophany (Bratsky) Monastery


The Slavonic inscription discovered under the sheathing of the carved wooden “Theophanes’ cross” from the National Kyiv-Pechersk Historical and Cultural Reserve allows one to assume that the cross was initially designated as a donation to a church in Moldavian monastery of Râşca. This church of the Nativity of St John the Baptist was Metropolitan Theophanes II of Suceava’s foundation. During his lifetime this hierarch offered to this church and the monastery also several precious manuscripts. One of them belongs to the Vernadsky National Library of Ukraine (f. 301, nr. 43 L), two others are in Bucharest (BAR, Slav., nr. 505) and in Moscow (collection of M. S. Byvshev). The Kyivan blessing cross was thus part of a group of donations (displaying dedicatory inscriptions) which Theophanes bestowed to Râşca.