Exceptional Continental Early 19th Century Carved Walnut Angels, probably French, each draped figure modeled with hands crossed at the chest or clasped in prayer, kneeling on a cloud bank, H:3'11.5" W:16.5" D:22.5", and H:4' W:19" D:19" In the Bible, angels are a medium of God's power; they exist to execute God's will. Angels reveal themselves to individuals as well as to the whole nation, to announce events, either good or bad, affecting humans. Angels foretold to Abraham the birth of Isaac, to Manoah the birth of Samson, and to Abraham the destruction of Sodom. Guardian angels were mentioned, but not, as was later the case, as guardian spirits of individuals and nations. God sent an angel to protect the Hebrew people after their exodus from Egypt, to lead them to the promised land, and to destroy the hostile tribes in their way Angels are frequently depicted as human in appearance, though many theologians have argued that they have no physical existence, but can incarnate. Seraphim are often depicted as having six wings radiating from a center concealing a body, as depicted in the Bible. Starting with the end of the 4th century, angels were depicted with wings, presumably to give an easy explanation for them travelling to and from heaven. This is also heavily implied by the Scriptures. Scholastic theologians teach that angels are able to reason instantly, and to move instantly. They also teach that angels are intermediaries to some forces that would otherwise be natural forces of the universe, such as the rotation of planets and the motion of stars. Angels possess the beatific vision, or the unencumbered understanding of God (the essence of the pleasure of heaven). Some Christian traditions hold that angels are organized into three major hierarchies which are subdivided into orders called Choirs, and list as many as ten orders of angels. The Celestial Hierarchy is the source of the names that have become part of tradition: Angels, Archangels, Principalities, Powers, Virtues, Dominions, Thrones, Cherubim, and Seraphim. In this hierarchy, the Cherubim and Seraphim are typically closest to God, while the Angels and Archangels are most active in human affairs; however, in some traditions Archangels are considered the highest-ranking order, and it is notable that there are fewer Archangels than any other category. Many of these names come from verses in the Bible which would appear at first to be referencing a literal thing, although retroactively suggesting that they really mention angels can also make sense in the context. It is also commonly held belief in many modern christian traditions that the immortal soul of a human that has died and risen to Heaven can eventually become an Angel themselves. Whatever your beliefs are the angelilic motif is a fascinating subject and this artifact are large in scale and with great detail to the carving, probably originaly in a Church near the Altar.
Antique Religious Items