In the year of 2017, in the Hermitage repository, a portrait of Xenia of St. Petersburg was found. About the features of this find read in our article.

A Brief Historical Reference

It is known that Saint Xenia of Petersburgwas born at the beginning of the XVIII century. Her family was noble. When Xenia reached adulthood, she was married to Colonel Petrov Andrei Fedorovich. They lived in the city on the Neva. Their marriage was short-lived, as soon as Andrei Fedorovich died.

lifetime portrait of St. Petersburg xenia

So at 26 years old Ksenia Grigorievna became a widow. For her, it was a big blow. She forgot all earthly human pleasures. Surrounding people, as well as relatives, thought that she had lost her mind. Rumors and talk about this intensified after the time when Xenia Grigoryevna distributed all the property to sick and poor people. She presented her good house to a friend. Relatives of Xenia were very worried and worried about her, and then filed a petition to the authorities about not allowing her to hand out property. The chiefs summoned a woman to the conversation, after which they were convinced that Ksenia Grigoryevna was healthy, and therefore she could do what she wanted with the property. Soon Xenia distributed everything that she had. So she chose the hard and difficult path of foolishness for the sake of the Son of God. The woman dressed in the uniform of her husband. She was wearing his underwear, a jacket and a caftan. Xenia assured all the townspeople that her husband is alive, but his wife Xenia died. In her own name, she never responded, but especially she liked it when they called her the name of the deceased spouse.

There was no definite place of residence for Blessed. A woman wandered around the city during the day. Very often she was noticed next to the church of the apostle Matthew. Evil people often laughed at her and sneered, especially street boys. Blissful Xenia of Petersburg was resignedly resigned. Over the years, people have become accustomed to such an image of a woman. She was given money, as well as warm clothes, but she never took off her husband's coat. All that she received from people, immediately handed out to the poor. At night she went to the field and read prayers, made prostrations.

People began to notice that well-being becamevisit those people who once helped something with Blessed Xenia. When she turned 71, her soul left the body. The saint was buried in the Smolensk cemetery.

All who prayed at her grave receivedhealing from disease. Later, a chapel was built over her grave. During the revolution, the Bolsheviks tried to close it, but no efforts by atheists drowned out the memory of the foolish Xenia. People still worship this saint today.

a portrait of a St. Petersburg xenia from the Hermitage

History of the find

Today in the Hermitage you can find out howKsenia Grigorievna looked real. Workers of the museum presented the only famous portrait of Ksenia of St. Petersburg (photo No. 1 in the article). Almost 100 years he was in the museum's storerooms. Found it only recently, when the funds were systematized. Restorers immediately started to work. Surprisingly, before, no one paid attention to the lifetime portrait of Blessed Xenia of St. Petersburg. So the saint herself paid attention to her employees.

As a portrait came to the museum

In 1930, the portrait of KseniaPetersburg fell into the Hermitage. He was brought from the Smolensk cemetery by the collector and lover of antiquities Feodor Pavlovich Morozov. This is evidenced by the inscription on the reverse side of the portrait. Since then, the portrait was listed in the museum's funds.

lifetime portrait of blessed St. Petersburg

The fate of the portrait a century earlier

Throughout the XIX century, the lifetime portraitXenia Petersburg from the Hermitage was in the chapel at the Smolensk cemetery. In front of him was a lamp, or maybe a candle, so the image formed a layer of soot. The canvas was very dark. Workers of the museum became aware that the portrait experienced several non-professional restorations.

So, to restore the original lookthe image was extremely difficult. Before the professional restoration, the portrait was rather dark, and the blessed attire was baggy. In some places gray hair appeared. During the work the artists corrected the form of the shoulders. Thanks to this the portrait became more interesting and looked finished.

Before, no one could have imagined howlooked Xenia of Petersburg. To see the face of a saint became possible thanks to the work of restorers. They gave the canvas a varnish and an ideal toning. To learn more about the process of creating a portrait today is not possible for anyone.

portrait of a blessed xenia of St. Petersburg


The Hermitage workers had to work hard. Restorers conducted laboratory studies, during which it was revealed that before them is a real relic. The technical and technological expertise carried out an analysis of the soil, which showed that the canvas was made in the late 18th or early 19th century. The study of the structure of the frame confirmed the conclusions of the chemical analysis. The portrait is an artistic work of the era in which the saint lived. The lifetime portrait of Xenia of Petersburg contains the image of God's man, who carries the Christian feat.

blessed Xenia of Petersburg


There are protocols for processing materials and machineryPainting, which was made by the staff of the museum research department. Then an art criticism analysis was conducted. After all stages of the study, artists and restorers concluded that the portrait was very cautious. It also became known that the portrait of Xenia of St. Petersburg was written spontaneously. Maybe even at the same time. The artist detailed features of the face.

Thus, it becomes clear that this portrait is not a fantasy at all. The probability that Ksenia Grigorievna is looking at us from the canvas is very high.

It's time for people to see an intravision portraitblah. Xenia of Petersburg. The canvas depicts the image of a man from whom the myth of the city on the Neva was born. Such an amazing transformation happened with Ksenia Grigoryevna in life, thanks to which her portrait became also an icon. The death of her husband was for her a huge blow, turning all her mind.