Author Topic: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves  (Read 2730 times)

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Offline Bono Vox

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Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« on: August 20, 2009, 02:16:50 AM »
I was wondering if any of you knew anything about the tradition and meaning of the Romanian Icon Scarves? I searched online, but didn't get much information on it. Do the scarves signify anything?

I also wanted to know if any of you know where to get one? My wife is from Romania, but was raised pentecostal and doesn't know how to go about getting one.

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« Last Edit: August 20, 2009, 02:17:26 AM by Bono Vox »
Troparion - Tone 1:
O Sebastian, spurning the assemblies of the wicked,You gathered the wise martyrs Who with you cast down the enemy; And standing worthily before the throne of God, You gladden those who cry to you:Glory to him who has strengthened you! Glory to him who has granted you a crown!

Offline ma2000

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #1 on: August 20, 2009, 02:29:55 AM »
Hello!

Do you mean like these?
http://www.romanianmuseum.com/gift/stergar/stergar.htm
I think you could buy them online from there or do a search on "Ştergar". That's how they are called in my area of the country.
As far asa I know, they are used as a decoration and don't have any liturgical purpose. They could be used to simply decorate walls, paitings or icons. They were originally used to wipe your hands. In my area, only old people use them anymore. My grandma has a few.
« Last Edit: August 20, 2009, 02:31:33 AM by ma2000 »
Asemănându-te obiceiurilor râvnitorului Ilie şi urmând Botezătorului pe drepte cărări, Părinte Antonie, te-ai făcut locuitor pustiului şi ai întărit lumea cu rugăciunile tale. Pentru aceasta, roagă-te lui Hristos Dumnezeu, să mântuiască sufletele noastre.

Offline ma2000

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #2 on: August 20, 2009, 02:38:59 AM »
A more modern word for them is "prosop" (towel)
http://www.nicoratex.ro/artizanat.htm
Asemănându-te obiceiurilor râvnitorului Ilie şi urmând Botezătorului pe drepte cărări, Părinte Antonie, te-ai făcut locuitor pustiului şi ai întărit lumea cu rugăciunile tale. Pentru aceasta, roagă-te lui Hristos Dumnezeu, să mântuiască sufletele noastre.

Offline mike

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #3 on: August 20, 2009, 03:26:32 AM »
Belarusians, Ukrainians and, I suppose, Russians also use similar. They are called "towels" -  "roo-tchneekee" They are used for decoration mostly. The only liturgical use, I know, is when Bishop washes his during the DL, he wipes them with the towel.


« Last Edit: August 20, 2009, 03:41:16 AM by mike »

Offline Bono Vox

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #4 on: August 20, 2009, 12:16:08 PM »
Thanks for the info guys. They look beautiful.
Troparion - Tone 1:
O Sebastian, spurning the assemblies of the wicked,You gathered the wise martyrs Who with you cast down the enemy; And standing worthily before the throne of God, You gladden those who cry to you:Glory to him who has strengthened you! Glory to him who has granted you a crown!

Offline Elpidophoros

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2009, 03:00:04 PM »
In the byantine tradition, people sometimes cover their hands with cloth before to take or hold a very sacrad object.Such kind of towels can be used in a procession to prevent people touch the icons by bare hands.
For the same reason,we can see some old/traditional priests bring out the gospel book in sunday matins with their hands be coverd by phailonion.

Offline pensateomnia

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2009, 03:13:54 PM »
I was wondering if any of you knew anything about the tradition and meaning of the Romanian Icon Scarves?

According to the Romanian monks and nuns I have spoken to, it expresses honor to the Icon and that which it depicts, much like placing flowers around a festal Icon. Romanians also carve crosses that include a sort of wooden covering, over which they sometimes drape cloth.
« Last Edit: August 20, 2009, 03:14:41 PM by pensateomnia »
But for I am a man not textueel I wol noght telle of textes neuer a deel. (Chaucer, The Manciple's Tale, 1.131)

Offline Bono Vox

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2009, 03:28:00 PM »
I was wondering if any of you knew anything about the tradition and meaning of the Romanian Icon Scarves?

According to the Romanian monks and nuns I have spoken to, it expresses honor to the Icon and that which it depicts, much like placing flowers around a festal Icon. Romanians also carve crosses that include a sort of wooden covering, over which they sometimes drape cloth.

That's really interesting. I have noticed a lot of Romanian crosses have a wooden covering on it, almost like a roof. I had just assumed it was part of their style. Thanks for the great info!
Troparion - Tone 1:
O Sebastian, spurning the assemblies of the wicked,You gathered the wise martyrs Who with you cast down the enemy; And standing worthily before the throne of God, You gladden those who cry to you:Glory to him who has strengthened you! Glory to him who has granted you a crown!

Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2009, 03:43:00 PM »

Ukrainians do the same thing.   ;)

We also do not touch "holy" objects with bare hands.  This includes wedding crowns held over the couple, icons carried in processions, etc.

Additionally, we drape our best embroidered "towels" (Rooshniki) on our icons/crosses.  It's adornment, it is also a sign of respect - marking the object as not just a piece of art (which does not get draped).


Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
—St. Isaac of Syria

Offline GabrieltheCelt

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Re: Question about Romanian Icon Scarves
« Reply #9 on: August 25, 2009, 01:23:57 AM »
I've always wondered what the significance of these beautiful "towels" held.  I have a Ştergar draped around an Icon of the Theotokos that was made for me by a mother of a great friend from Romania.  Thanks for asking this question BV, and thanks for the great replies!
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