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Medieval symbolism 1

Запись от Konstantin размещена 07.10.2009 в 13:28

Have you ever stand at some medieval paintings of the artist, feeling like an illiterate? About the plot can at least read the title. But the secret language of painting, intuitive painter and his contemporaries, and often goes unheeded. What do the letters in the left corner, why not splash in the river fish, and dolphin, that for a pitcher, or gate, or pearls, for which attention and some were not treated right away? To little to fill the gap in knowledge, we invite you to get acquainted with some (not all) "words" from the rich language of Christian symbols. Once, in times of persecution, believers invented (or borrowed), the first of its icons, that outsiders could not penetrate their secrets.

Objects and phenomena
Creatures and animals
Plants and fruits
Signs, crosses and stars

Objects and phenomena


Sometimes it represents the path to another world, but more often the appearance of this character in the film means hymns or musical instruments that are used for the glorification of God.

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The Tower

The symbol of chastity, the word of God and shelter. Tower with three windows - the symbol of Saint Barbara, who for his incarceration is not required to build a tower with two, but three (in honor of the Trinity) windows.

Blank - symbolizes the body, from which the soul. Vase with her drinking from the bird - a symbol of eternal bliss. Vase with a lily speaks of purity of the Virgin Mary.

Advent wreath
The symbol of Christmas and the expectations of the holiday. Crown round and made of evergreen tree - and then, and another sign of eternity. In the houses of Catholics Advent wreaths appear for four weeks before Christmas. Four candles are lit alternately on Sunday: first blue, followed by two pink and finally white.

The symbol of treachery. Hanged a woman in the painting - a symbol of despair.


Symbol of Doomsday, and God's court at all. Often portrayed in the hands of the Archangel Michael, whose duty - to weigh the souls of sinners.


Long flowing hair - a symbol of repentance.

Have different values. Public may symbolize entry into heaven, and, on the contrary, death and departure from earthly life, as well as the expulsion from Paradise of Adam and Eve. Destroyed Gate - the symbol of hell and evil, which Christ has trampled his resurrection. Always central element in the scene of the descent into hell.

Tools crucifixion, and therefore a symbol of Christ's passion. In the early crucifixes depict four nails, but later in the paintings are more common three (both feet nailed to the cross one nail) - as an indication of the Trinity.


All-seeing eye represents God. Depicted in the triangle eyes means infinite holiness of the Trinity.

Symbol of Christ, taken from the Gospel of John. It may also mean an invitation to prayer.

The symbol of the kingdom of heaven, God's word and secret knowledge, inaccessible to a Gentile.

Dice and coat

Symbol of Christ's passion. The soldiers who crucified him, shared the clothes of Christ into four parts, but decided to play the coat, leaving the bones.

Symbolizes faith, spreading like the smell of incense.

Symbolize the power of the church to forgive sins in Jesus' name. Two key - double power: the heavens open and close the repentant sinner to repentance.

Symbolizes the Bible. The public - the truth and revelation. Closed contains the names selected and symbolizes the terrible trial. In the hands of the apostle book refers to the Gospel. Also part of the emblem of many saints. Since the letters alpha and omega - the attribute of Christ.

Spinning wheel - the symbol of divine power. HOT means expulsion from Paradise of Adam and Eve.

The symbol of the call to prayer and preaching the Gospel throughout the world.


The symbol of the church. Ship Mast likened to a cross.

The symbol of royal power, is applicable to Christ as King of kings.

Pitcher and Bowl
Symbolize ritual purity, a reminder of the legend, in which Christ, after supper washes the feet of his disciples. Upturned - may mark the void.

The symbol of God's word and wisdom, the sign of the presence of God during prayer.

One of the tools used in the crucifixion of Christ, and therefore the symbol of his suffering.

The emblem of many saints and martyrs who had suffered death by the sword.

The symbol of human greed and avarice, and the Passion - an allusion to the betrayal of Judas.

Symbol of holiness and greatness, depicted for the heads of saints and the righteous. Can be different shapes: a circle, square and triangle. Triangular halo is always the image of God the Father (the sign of the Trinity), round - the Virgin Mary. Square halo can be used to distinguish between saints and ordinary people: a square, a symbol of order, is considered inferior in relation to the circle, a symbol of eternity.

The symbol of betrayal, an instrument of torture.

The symbol of religious fervor. On the forehead of the apostles signify the descent of the Holy Spirit. Seven tongues of flame - the seven gifts of the Spirit.

Scourge and post
Symbols passion of Christ.


The symbol of salvation and light. Semirozhkovy candlestick, often called a "menorah", used by Christians to represent the Holy Spirit and his seven gifts: wisdom, intelligence, insight, firmness, knowledge, piety and fear.

Reminds that Jesus - the pastor. And also about the shepherds who came to worship the baby Jesus.

The right and left sides
During the last trial righteous is allocated to the right of God and sinners - to the left.

A symbol of faith, forgiveness, unity and reconciliation with faith. A rainbow that appeared in the sky after the Flood, was the promise of God never sends more similar to Earth. Often depicted as the throne of Christ.

With three drops of water a symbol of baptism in general, and especially the baptism of Christ. Three drops mean Trinity. Just sink is often a symbol of pilgrimage.


The symbol of the last trial, the resurrection and the call to prayer.

Open mouth - a symbol of greed, but sometimes the breath of life. Jaws of monsters in the paintings symbolize hell.
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