The Brill Dictionary of Religion

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(627 words)

Icons (Greek, eíkon, ‘image’) are the sacred images of the Eastern Churches. Since the Byzantine image controversy (which began around 726 under Emperor Leo III and lasted, through various reversals, until 843 under Empress Theodora), the icon has stood at the center of Eastern Christian theological and artistic effort. The laborious defeat of currents of opposition to and even destruction of images (‘iconoclasm’) had the consequence that the creation of icons in the Eastern church was subjected t…

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Mohr, Hubert, “Icon”, in: The Brill Dictionary of Religion, Edited by Kocku von Stuckrad. Consulted online on 19 January 2021 <>
First published online: 2006
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004124332, 20051223

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