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The wretch lives too long! Now King Aegeus had been gazing earnestly at the young stranger, as he drew near the throne. There was something, he knew not what, either in his white brow, or in the fine expression of his mouth, or in his beautiful and tender eyes, that made him indistinctly feel as if he had seen this youth before; as if, indeed, he had trotted him on his knee when a baby, and had beheld him growing to be a stalwart man, while he himself grew old.
But Medea guessed how the king felt, and would not suffer him to yield to these natural sensibilities; although they were the voice of his deepest heart, telling him as plainly as it could speak, that here was our dear son, and Aethra's son, coming to claim him for a father. The enchantress again whispered in the king's ear, and compelled him, by her witchcraft, to see everything under a false aspect. I am proud to show hospitality to so heroic a youth. Do me the favor to drink the contents of this goblet.
It is brimming over, as you see, with delicious wine, such as I bestow only on those who are worthy of it! None is more worthy to quaff it than yourself! So saying, King Aegeus took the golden goblet from the table, and was about to offer it to Theseus. But, partly through his infirmities, and partly because it seemed so sad a thing to take away this young man's life, however wicked he might be, and partly, no doubt, because his heart was wiser than his head, and quaked within him at the thought of what he was going to do—for all these reasons, the king's hand trembled so much that a great deal of the wine slopped over.
In order to strengthen his purpose, and fearing lest the whole of the precious poison should be wasted, one of his nephews now whispered to him:. This is the very sword with which he meant to slay you. How sharp, and bright, and terrible it is!
At these words, Aegeus drove every thought and feeling out of his breast, except the one idea of how justly the young man deserved to be put to death. He sat erect on his throne, and held out the goblet of wine with a steady hand, and bent on Theseus a frown of kingly severity; for, after all, he had too noble a spirit to murder even a treacherous enemy with a deceitful smile upon his face.
Theseus held out his hand to take the wine. But, before he touched it, King Aegeus trembled again. His eyes had fallen on the gold-hilted sword that hung at the young man's side. He drew back the goblet. My dear mother her name is Aethra told me his story while I was yet a little child. But it is only a month since I grew strong enough to lift the heavy stone, and take the sword and sandals from beneath it, and come to Athens to seek my father.
It is my son. I have quite forgotten what became of the king's nephews. But when the wicked Medea saw this new turn of affairs, she hurried out of the room, and going to her private chamber, lost no time to setting her enchantments to work. In a few moments, she heard a great noise of hissing snakes outside of the chamber window; and behold! Medea staid only long enough to take her son with her, and to steal the crown jewels, together with the king's best robes, and whatever other valuable things she could lay hands on; and getting into the chariot, she whipped up the snakes, and ascended high over the city.
The king, hearing the hiss of the serpents, scrambled as fast as he could to the window, and bawled out to the abominable enchantress never to come back. The whole people of Athens, too, who had run out of doors to see this wonderful spectacle, set up a shout of joy at the prospect of getting rid of her. Medea, almost bursting with rage, uttered precisely such a hiss as one of her own snakes, only ten times more venomous and spiteful; and glaring fiercely out of the blaze of the chariot, she shook her hands over the multitude below, as if she were scattering a million of curses among them.
In so doing, however, she unintentionally let fall about five hundred diamonds of the first water, together with a thousand great pearls, and two thousand emeralds, rubies, sapphires, opals, and topazes, to which she had helped herself out of the king's strong box. All these came pelting down, like a shower of many-colored hailstones, upon the heads of grown people and children, who forthwith gathered them up, and carried them back to the palace.
But King Aegeus told them that they were welcome to the whole, and to twice as many more, if he had them, for the sake of his delight at finding his son, and losing the wicked Medea. And, indeed, if you had seen how hateful was her last look, as the flaming chariot flew upward, you would not have wondered that both king and people should think her departure a good riddance. And now Prince Theseus was taken into great favor by his royal father. The old king was never weary of having him sit beside him on his throne which was quite wide enough for two , and of hearing him tell about his dear mother, and his childhood, and his many boyish efforts to lift the ponderous stone.
Theseus, however, was much too brave and active a young man to be willing to spend all his time in relating things which had already happened. His ambition was to perform other and more heroic deeds, which should be better worth telling in prose and verse.
Nor had he been long in Athens before he caught and chained a terrible mad bull, and made a public show of him, greatly to the wonder and admiration of good King Aegeus and his subjects. But pretty soon, he undertook an affair that made all his foregone adventures seem like mere boy's play. The occasion of it was as follows:.
One morning, when Prince Theseus awoke, he fancied that he must have had a very sorrowful dream, and that it was still running in his mind, even now that his eyes were opened. For it appeared as if the air was full of a melancholy wail; and when he listened more attentively, he could hear sobs, and groans, and screams of woe, mingled with deep, quiet sighs, which came from the king's palace, and from the streets, and from the temples, and from every habitation in the city.
And all these mournful noises, issuing out of thousands of separate hearts, united themselves into one great sound of affliction, which had startled Theseus from slumber. He put on his clothes as quickly as he could not forgetting his sandals and gold-hilted sword , and, hastening to the king, inquired what it all meant.
This is the wofulest anniversary in the whole year. It is the day when we annually draw lots to see which of the youths and maids of Athens shall go to be devoured by the horrible Minotaur! Is it not possible, at the risk of one's life, to slay him? But King Aegeus shook his venerable head, and to convince Theseus that it was quite a hopeless case, he gave him an explanation of the whole affair.
It seems that in the island of Crete there lived a certain dreadful monster, called a Minotaur, which was shaped partly like a man and partly like a bull, and was altogether such a hideous sort of a creature that it is really disagreeable to think of him. If he were suffered to exist at all, it should have been on some desert island, or in the duskiness of some deep cavern, where nobody would ever be tormented by his abominable aspect.
But King Minos, who reigned over Crete, laid out a vast deal of money in building a habitation for the Minotaur, and took great care of his health and comfort, merely for mischief's sake. A few years before this time, there had been a war between the city of Athens and the island of Crete, in which the Athenians were beaten, and compelled to beg for peace.
No peace could they obtain, however, except on condition that they should send seven young men and seven maidens, every year, to be devoured by the pet monster of the cruel King Minos. For three years past, this grievous calamity had been borne. And the sobs, and groans, and shrieks, with which the city was now filled, were caused by the people's woe, because the fatal day had come again, when the fourteen victims were to be chosen by lot; and the old people feared lest their sons or daughters might be taken, and the youths and damsels dreaded lest they themselves might be destined to glut the ravenous maw of that detestable man-brute.
But when Theseus heard the story, he straightened himself up, so that he seemed taller than ever before; and as for his face it was indignant, despiteful, bold, tender, and compassionate, all in one look. You are a royal prince, and have a right to hold yourself above the destinies of common men. The old king shed tears, and besought Theseus not to leave him desolate in his old age, more especially as he had but just begun to know the happiness of possessing a good and valiant son.
Theseus, however, felt that he was in the right, and therefore would not give up his resolution. But he assured his father that he did not intend to be eaten up, unresistingly, like a sheep, and that, if the Minotaur devoured him, it should not be without a battle for his dinner.
And finally, since he could not help it, King Aegeus consented to let him go. So a vessel was got ready, and rigged with black sails; and Theseus, with six other young men, and seven tender and beautiful damsels, came down to the harbor to embark. A sorrowful multitude accompanied them to the shore.
There was the poor old king, too, leaning on his son's arm, and looking as if his single heart held all the grief of Athens. Just as Prince Theseus was going on board, his father bethought himself of one last word to say. Now, being weighed down with infirmities, I know not whether I can survive till the vessel shall return. But, as long as I do live, I shall creep daily to the top of yonder cliff, to watch if there be a sail upon the sea. And, dearest Theseus, if by some happy chance, you should escape the jaws of the Minotaur, then tear down those dismal sails, and hoist others that shall be bright as the sunshine.
Beholding them on the horizon, myself and all the people will know that you are coming back victorious, and will welcome you with such a festal uproar as Athens never heard before. Theseus promised that he would do so. Then going on board, the mariners trimmed the vessel's black sails to the wind, which blew faintly off the shore, being pretty much made up of the sighs that everybody kept pouring forth on this melancholy occasion. But by and by, when they had got fairly out to sea, there came a stiff breeze from the north-west, and drove them along as merrily over the white-capped waves as if they had been going on the most delightful errand imaginable.
And though it was a sad business enough, I rather question whether fourteen young people, without any old persons to keep them in order, could continue to spend the whole time of the voyage in being miserable. There had been some few dances upon the undulating deck, I suspect, and some hearty bursts of laughter, and other such unseasonable merriment among the victims, before the high blue mountains of Crete began to show themselves among the far-off clouds.
That sight, to be sure, made them all very grave again. Theseus stood among the sailors, gazing eagerly towards the land; although, as yet, it seemed hardly more substantial than the clouds, amidst which the mountains were looming up. Once or twice, he fancied that he saw a glare of some bright object, a long way off, flinging a gleam across the waves. As the breeze came fresher just then, the master was busy with trimming his sails, and had no more time to answer questions.
But while the vessel flew faster and faster towards Crete, Theseus was astonished to behold a human figure, gigantic in size, which appeared to be striding, with a measured movement, along the margin of the island. It stepped from cliff to cliff, and sometimes from one headland to another, while the sea foamed and thundered on the shore beneath, and dashed its jets of spray over the giant's feet.
What was still more remarkable, whenever the sun shone on this huge figure, it flickered and glimmered; its vast countenance, too, had a metallic lustre, and threw great flashes of splendor through the air. The folds of its garments, moreover, instead of waving in the wind, fell heavily over its limbs, as if woven of some kind of metal.
The nigher the vessel came, the more Theseus wondered what this immense giant could be, and whether it actually had life or no. For, though it walked, and made other lifelike motions, there yet was a kind of jerk in its gait, which, together with its brazen aspect, caused the young prince to suspect that it was no true giant, but only a wonderful piece of machinery.
The figure looked all the more terrible because it carried an enormous brass club on its shoulder. Some say, indeed, that this Talus was hammered out for King Minos by Vulcan himself, the skilfullest of all workers in metal. But who ever saw a brazen image that had sense enough to walk round an island three times a day, as this giant walks round the island of Crete, challenging every vessel that comes nigh the shore? And, on the other hand, what living thing, unless his sinews were made of brass, would not be weary of marching eighteen hundred miles in the twenty-four hours, as Talus does, without ever sitting down to rest?
He is a puzzler, take him how you will. Still the vessel went bounding onward; and now Theseus could hear the brazen clangor of the giant's footsteps, as he trod heavily upon the sea-beaten rocks, some of which were seen to crack and crumble into the foaming waves beneath his weight. As they approached the entrance of the port, the giant straddled clear across it, with a foot firmly planted on each headland, and uplifting his club to such a height that its butt-end was hidden in the cloud, he stood in that formidable posture, with the sun gleaming all over his metallic surface.
There seemed nothing else to be expected but that, the next moment, he would fetch his great club down, slam bang, and smash the vessel into a thousand pieces, without heeding how many innocent people he might destroy; for there is seldom any mercy in a giant, you know, and quite as little in a piece of brass clockwork. But just when Theseus and his companions thought the blow was coming, the brazen lips unclosed themselves, and the figure spoke.
And when the ringing voice ceased, there was just such a reverberation as you may have heard within a great church bell, for a moment or two after the stroke of the hammer. And he whirled his club aloft more threateningly than ever, as if he were about to smite them with a thunderstroke right amidships, because Athens, so little while ago, had been at war with Crete. That one loud word rolled all about the sky, while again there was a booming reverberation within the figure's breast.
The vessel glided between the headlands of the port, and the giant resumed his march. In a few moments, this wondrous sentinel was far away, flashing in the distant sunshine, and revolving with immense strides round the island of Crete, as it was his never-ceasing task to do. No sooner had they entered the harbor than a party of the guards of King Minos came down to the water side, and took charge of the fourteen young men and damsels.
Surrounded by these armed warriors, Prince Theseus and his companions were led to the king's palace, and ushered into his presence. Now, Minos was a stern and pitiless king. If the figure that guarded Crete was made of brass, then the monarch, who ruled over it, might be thought to have a still harder metal in his breast, and might have been called a man of iron.
He bent his shaggy brows upon the poor Athenian victims. Any other mortal, beholding their fresh and tender beauty, and their innocent looks, would have felt himself sitting on thorns until he had made every soul of them happy by bidding them go free as the summer wind. But this immitigable Minos cared only to examine whether they were plump enough to satisfy the Minotaur's appetite. For my part, I wish he himself had been the only victim; and the monster would have found him a pretty tough one.
One after another, King Minos called these pale, frightened youths and sobbing maidens to his footstool, gave them each a poke in the ribs with his sceptre to try whether they were in good flesh or no , and dismissed them with a nod to his guards. But when his eyes rested on Theseus, the king looked at him more attentively, because his face was calm and brave.
But thou, King Minos, art thou not thyself appalled, who, year after year, hast perpetrated this dreadful wrong, by giving seven innocent youths and as many maidens to be devoured by a monster? Dost thou not tremble, wicked king, to turn yhine eyes inward on thine own heart?
Sitting there on thy golden throne, and in thy robes of majesty, I tell thee to thy face, King Minos, thou art a more hideous monster than the Minotaur himself! Take them away, guards; and let this free-spoken youth be the Minotaur's first morsel. Near the king's throne though I had no time to tell you so before stood his daughter Ariadne. She was a beautiful and tender-hearted maiden, and looked at these poor doomed captives with very different feelings from those of the iron-breasted King Minos.
She really wept indeed, at the idea of how much human happiness would be needlessly thrown away, by giving so many young people, in the first bloom and rose blossom of their lives, to be eaten up by a creature who, no doubt, would have preferred a fat ox, or even a large pig, to the plumpest of them. And when she beheld the brave, spirited figure of Prince Theseus bearing himself so calmly in his terrible peril, she grew a hundred times more pitiful than before.
As the guards were taking him away, she flung herself at the king's feet, and besought him to set all the captives free, and especially this one young man. It is a matter of state policy, and therefore quite beyond thy weak comprehension. Go water thy flowers, and think no more of these Athenian caitiffs, whom the Minotaur shall as certainly eat up for breakfast as I will eat a partridge for my supper. So saying, the king looked cruel enough to devour Theseus and all the rest of the captives himself, had there been no Minotaur to save him the trouble.
As he would hear not another word in their favor, the prisoners were now led away, and clapped into a dungeon, where the jailer advised them to go to sleep as soon as possible, because the Minotaur was in the habit of calling for breakfast early.
The seven maidens and six of the young men soon sobbed themselves to slumber. But Theseus was not like them. He felt conscious that he was wiser, and braver, and stronger than his companions, and that therefore he had the responsibility of all their lives upon him, and must consider whether there was no way to save them, even in this last extremity. So he kept himself awake, and paced to and fro across the gloomy dungeon in which they were shut up.
Just before midnight, the door was softly unbarred, and the gentle Ariadne showed herself, with a torch in her hand. What had become of the jailer and the guards, Theseus never knew. But, however that might be, Ariadne opened all the doors, and led him forth from the darksome prison into the pleasant moonlight. Here is your own sword, which the guards deprived you of. You will need it; and pray Heaven you may use it well.
Then she led Theseus along by the hand until they came to a dark, shadowy grove, where the moonlight wasted itself on the tops of the trees, without shedding hardly so much as a glimmering beam upon their pathway. After going a good way through this obscurity, they reached a high marble wall, which was overgrown with creeping plants, that made it shaggy with their verdure. The wall seemed to have no door, nor any windows, but rose up, lofty, and massive, and mysterious, and was neither to be clambered over, nor, as far as Theseus could perceive, to be passed through.
Nevertheless, Ariadne did but press one of her soft little fingers against a particular block of marble and, though it looked as solid as any other part of the wall, it yielded to her touch, disclosing an entrance just wide enough to admit them They crept through, and the marble stone swung back into its place. That Daedalus was a very cunning workman; but of all his artful contrivances, this labyrinth is the most wondrous.
Were we to take but a few steps from the doorway, we might wander about all our lifetime, and never find it again. Yet in the very center of this labyrinth is the Minotaur; and, Theseus, you must go thither to seek him. Just as he spoke, they heard a rough and very disagreeable roar, which greatly resembled the lowing of a fierce bull, but yet had some sort of sound like the human voice.
Theseus even fancied a rude articulation in it, as if the creature that uttered it were trying to shape his hoarse breath into words. It was at some distance, however, and he really could not tell whether it sounded most like a bull's roar or a man's harsh voice. Farewell, brave Theseus. So the young man took the end of the silken string in his left hand, and his gold-hilted sword, ready drawn from its scabbard, in the other, and trod boldly into the inscrutable labyrinth.
How this labyrinth was built is more than I can tell you. But so cunningly contrived a mizmaze was never seen in the world, before nor since. There can be nothing else so intricate, unless it were the brain of a man like Daedalus, who planned it, or the heart of any ordinary man; which last, to be sure, is ten times as great a mystery as the labyrinth of Crete.
Theseus had not taken five steps before he lost sight of Ariadne; and in five more his head was growing dizzy. But still he went on, now creeping through a low arch, now ascending a flight of steps, now in one crooked passage and now in another, with here a door opening before him, and there one banging behind, until it really seemed as if the walls spun round, and whirled him round along with them. And all the while, through these hollow avenues, now nearer, now farther off again, resounded the cry of the Minotaur; and the sound was so fierce, so cruel, so ugly, so like a bull's roar, and withal so like a human voice, and yet like neither of them, that the brave heart of Theseus grew sterner and angrier at every step; for he felt it an insult to the moon and sky, and to our affectionate and simple Mother Earth, that such a monster should have the audacity to exist.
As he passed onward, the clouds gathered over the moon, and the labyrinth grew so dusky that Theseus could no longer discern the bewilderment through which he was passing. He would have left quite lost, and utterly hopeless of ever again walking in a straight path, if, every little while, he had not been conscious of a gentle twitch at the silken cord. Then he knew that the tender-hearted Ariadne was still holding the other end, and that she was fearing for him, and hoping for him, and giving him just as much of her sympathy as if she were close by his side.
O, indeed, I can assure you, there was a vast deal of human sympathy running along that slender thread of silk. But still he followed the dreadful roar of the Minotaur, which now grew louder and louder, and finally so very loud that Theseus fully expected to come close upon him, at every new zizgag and wriggle of the path. And at last, in an open space, at the very center of the labyrinth, he did discern the hideous creature.
Sure enough, what an ugly monster it was! Only his horned head belonged to a bull; and yet, somehow or other, he looked like a bull all over, preposterously waddling on his hind legs; or, if you happened to view him in another way, he seemed wholly a man, and all the more monstrous for being so. And there he was, the wretched thing, with no society, no companion, no kind of a mate, living only to do mischief, and incapable of knowing what affection means.
Theseus hated him, and shuddered at him, and yet could not but be sensible of some sort of pity; and all the more, the uglier and more detestable the creature was. For he kept striding to and fro, in a solitary frenzy of rage, continually emitting a hoarse roar, which was oddly mixed up with half-shaped words; and, after listening a while, Theseus understood that the Minotaur was saying to himself how miserable he was, and how hungry, and how he hated everybody, and how he longed to eat up the human race alive.
And O, my good little people, you will perhaps see, one of these days, as I do now, that every human being who suffers any thing evil to get into his nature, or to remain there, is a kind of Minotaur, an enemy of his fellow-creatures, and separated from all good companionship, as this poor monster was. Was Theseus afraid? By no means, my dear auditors. Not had the Minotaur had twenty bull-heads instead of one. Bold as he was, however, I rather fancy that it strengthened his valiant heart, just at this crisis, to feel a tremulous twitch at the silken cord, which he was still holding in his left hand.
It was as if Ariadne were giving him all her might and courage; and much as he already had, and little as she had to give, it made his own seem twice as much. And to confess the honest truth, he needed the whole; for now the Minotaur, turning suddenly about, caught sight of Theseus, and instantly lowered his horribly sharp horns, exactly as a mad bull does when he means to rush against an enemy.
At the same time, he belched forth a tremendous roar, in which there was something like the words of human language, but all disjointed and shaken to pieces by passing through the gullet of a miserably enraged brute. Theseus could only guess what the creature intended to say, and that rather by his gestures than his words; for the Minotaur's horns were sharper than his wits, and of a great deal more service to him than his tongue.
But probably this was the sense of what he uttered:. I'll stick my horns through you, and toss you fifty feet high, and eat you up the moment you come down. Without more words on either side, there ensued the most awful fight between Theseus and the Minotaur that ever happened beneath the sun or moon.
I really know not how it might have turned out, if the monster, in his first headlong rush against Theseus, had not missed him, by a hair's breadth, and broken one of his horns short off against the stone wall. On this mishap, he bellowed so intolerably that a part of the labyrinth tumbled down, and all the inhabitants of Crete mistook the noise for an uncommonly heavy thunder storm. Smarting with the pain, he galloped around the open space in so ridiculous a way that Theseus laughed at it, long afterwards, though not precisely at the moment.
After this, the two antagonists stood valiantly up to one another, and fought, sword to horn, for a long while. At last, the Minotaur made a run at Theseus, grazed his left side with his horn, and flung him down; and thinking that he had stabbed him to the heart, he cut a great caper in the air, opened his bull mouth from ear to ear, and prepared to snap his head off.
But Theseus by this time had leaped up, and caught the monster off his guard. Fetching a sword stroke at him with all his force, he hit him fair upon the neck, and made his bull head skip six yards from his human body, which fell down flat upon the ground. So now the battle was ended. Immediately the moon shone out as brightly as if all the troubles of the world, and all the wickedness and the ugliness that infest human life, were past and gone forever. And Theseus, as he leaned on his sword, taking breath, felt another twitch of the silken cord; for all through the terrible encounter, he had held it fast in his left hand.
Eager to let Ariadne know of his success, he followed the guidance of the thread, and soon found himself at the entrance of the labyrinth. If morning finds thee here, my father will avenge the Minotaur. To make my story short, the poor captives were awakened, and, hardly knowing whether it was not a joyful dream, were told of what Theseus had done, and that they must set sail for Athens before daybreak. Hastening down to the vessel, they all clambered on board, except Prince Theseus, who lingered behind them on the strand, holding Ariadne's hand clasped in his own.
Thou art too gentle and sweet a child for such an iron-hearted father as King Minos. He cares no more for thee than a granite rock cares for the little flower that grows in one of its crevices. But my father, King Aegeus, and my dear mother, Aethra, and all the fathers and mothers in Athens, and all the sons and daughters too, will love and honor thee as their benefactress. Come with us, then; for King Minos will be very angry when he knows what thou hast done.
Now, some low-minded people, who pretend to tell the story of Theseus and Ariadne, have the face to say that this royal and honorable maiden did really flee away, under cover of the night, with the young stranger whose life she had preserved. They say, too, that Prince Theseus who would have died sooner than wrong the meanest creature in the world ungratefully deserted Ariadne, on a solitary island, where the vessel touched on its voyage to Athens. But, had the noble Theseus heard these falsehoods, he would have served their slanderous authors as he served the Minotaur!
Here is what Ariadne answered, when the brave prince of Athens besought her to accompany him:. My father is old, and has nobody but myself to love him. Hard as you think his heart is, it would break to lose me. At first, King Minos will be angry; but he will soon forgive his only child; and, by and by, he will rejoice, I know, that no more youths and maidens must come from Athens to be devoured by the Minotaur.
I have saved you, Theseus, as much for my father's sake as for your own. Heaven bless you! All this was so true, and so maiden-like, and was spoken with so sweet a dignity, that Theseus would have blushed to urge her any longer. Nothing remained for him, therefore, but to bid Ariadne an affectionate farewell, and to go on board the vessel, and set sail.
In a few moments the white foam was boiling up before their prow, as Prince Theseus and his companions sailed out of the harbor, with a whistling breeze behind them. Talus, the brazen giant, on his never-ceasing sentinel's march, happened to be approaching that part of the coast; and they saw him, by the glimmering of the moonbeams on his polished surface, while he was yet a great way off.
As the figure moved like clockwork, however, and could neither hasten his enormous strides nor retard them, he arrived at the port when they were just beyond the reach of his club. Nevertheless, straddling from headland to headland, as his custom was, Talus attempted to strike a blow at the vessel, and, overreaching himself, tumbled at full length into the sea, which splashed high over his gigantic shape, as when an iceberg turns a somerset.
There he lies yet; and whoever desires to enrich himself by means of brass had better go thither with a diving bell, and fish up Talus. On the homeward voyage, the fourteen youths and damsels were in excellent spirits, as you will easily suppose. They spent most of their time in dancing, unless when the sidelong breeze made the deck slope too much. In due season, they came within sight of the coast of Attica, which was their native country. But here, I am grieved to tell you, happened a sad misfortune.
You will remember what Theseus unfortunately forgot that his father, King Aegeus, had enjoined it upon him to hoist sunshiny sails, instead of black ones, in case he should overcome the Minotaur, and return victorious. In the joy of their success, however, and amidst the sports, dancing, and other merriment, with which these young folks wore away the time, they never once thought whether their sails were black, white, or rainbow colored, and, indeed, left it entirely to the mariners whether they had any sails at all.
Thus the vessel returned, like a raven, with the same sable wings that had wafted her away. But poor King Aegeus, day after day, infirm as he was, had clambered to the summit of a cliff that overhung the sea, and there sat watching for Prince Theseus, homeward bound; and no sooner did he behold the fatal blackness of the sails, than he concluded that his dear son, whom he loved so much, and felt so proud of, had been eaten by the Minotaur.
He could not bear the thought of living any longer; so, first flinging his crown and sceptre into the sea useless baubles that they were to him now , King Aegeus merely stooped forward, and fell headlong over the cliff, and was drowned, poor soul, in the waves that foamed at its base! This was melancholy news for Prince Theseus, who, when he stepped ashore, found himself king of all the country, whether he would or no; and such a turn of fortune was enough to make any young man feel very much out of spirits.
However, he sent for his dear mother to Athens, and, by taking her advice in matters of state, became a very excellent monarch, and was greatly beloved by his people. A great while ago, when the world was full of wonders, there lived an earth-born Giant, named Antaeus, and a million or more of curious little earth-born people, who were called Pygmies. This Giant and these Pygmies being children of the same mother that is to say, our good old Grandmother Earth , were all brethren, and dwelt together in a very friendly and affectionate manner, far, far off, in the middle of hot Africa.
The Pygmies were so small, and there were so many sandy deserts and such high mountains between them and the rest of mankind, that nobody could get a peep at them oftener than once in a hundred years. As for the Giant, being of a very lofty stature, it was easy enough to see him, but safest to keep out of his sight.
Among the Pygmies, I suppose, if one of them grew to the height of six or eight inches, he was reckoned a prodigiously tall man. It must have been very pretty to behold their little cities, with streets two or three feet wide, paved with the smallest pebbles, and bordered by habitations about as big as a squirrel's cage. The king's palace attained to the stupendous magnitude of Periwinkle's baby house, and stood in the center of a spacious square, which could hardly have been covered by our hearth-rug.
Their principal temple, or cathedral, was as lofty as yonder bureau, and was looked upon as a wonderfully sublime and magnificent edifice. All these structures were built neither of stone nor wood. They were neatly plastered together by the Pygmy workmen, pretty much like birds' nests, out of straw, feathers, egg shells, and other small bits of stuff, with stiff clay instead of mortar; and when the hot sun had dried them, they were just as snug and comfortable as a Pygmy could desire.
The country round about was conveniently laid out in fields, the largest of which was nearly of the same extent as one of Sweet Fern's flower beds. Here the Pygmies used to plant wheat and other kinds of grain, which, when it grew up and ripened, overshadowed these tiny people as the pines, and the oaks, and the walnut and chestnut trees overshadow you and me, when we walk in our own tracts of woodland.
At harvest time, they were forced to go with their little axes and cut down the grain, exactly as a woodcutter makes a clearing in the forest; and when a stalk of wheat, with its overburdened top, chanced to come crashing down upon an unfortunate Pygmy, it was apt to be a very sad affair.
If it did not smash him all to pieces, at least, I am sure, it must have made the poor little fellow's head ache. And O, my stars! A whole family of them might have been put to bed in a shoe, or have crept into an old glove, and played at hide-and-seek in its thumb and fingers. You might have hidden a year-old baby under a thimble.
Now these funny Pygmies, as I told you before, had a Giant for their neighbor and brother, who was bigger, if possible, than they were little. He was so very tall that he carried a pine tree, which was eight feet through the butt, for a walking stick.
It took a far-sighted Pygmy, I can assure you, to discern his summit without the help of a telescope; and sometimes, in misty weather, they could not see his upper half, but only his long legs, which seemed to be striding about by themselves. But at noonday in a clear atmosphere, when the sun shone brightly over him, the Giant Antaeus presented a very grand spectacle.
There he used to stand, a perfect mountain of a man, with his great countenance smiling down upon his little brothers, and his one vast eye which was as big as a cart wheel, and placed right in the center of his forehead giving a friendly wink to the whole nation at once. The Pygmies loved to talk with Antaeus; and fifty times a day, one or another of them would turn up his head, and shout through the hollow of his fists, "Halloo, brother Antaeus!
How are you, my good fellow? It was a happy circumstance that Antaeus was the Pygmy people's friend; for there was more strength in his little finger than in ten million of such bodies as this. If he had been as ill-natured to them as he was to everybody else, he might have beaten down their biggest city at one kick, and hardly have known that he did it. With the tornado of his breath, he could have stripped the roofs from a hundred dwellings and sent thousands of the inhabitants whirling through the air.
He might have set his immense foot upon a multitude; and when he took it up again, there would have been a pitiful sight, to be sure. But, being the son of Mother Earth, as they likewise were, the Giant gave them his brotherly kindness, and loved them with as big a love as it was possible to feel for creatures so very small. And, on their parts, the Pygmies loved Antaeus with as much affection as their tiny hearts could hold.
He was always ready to do them any good offices that lay in his power; as for example, when they wanted a breeze to turn their windmills, the Giant would set all the sails a-going with the mere natural respiration of his lungs. When the sun was too hot, he often sat himself down, and let his shadow fall over the kingdom, from one frontier to the other; and as for matters in general, he was wise enough to let them alone, and leave the Pygmies to manage their own affairs—which, after all, is about the best thing that great people can do for little ones.
The Giant's life being as long as his body was large, while the lifetime of a Pygmy was but a span, this friendly intercourse had been going on for innumerable generations and ages. It was written about in the Pygmy histories, and talked about in their ancient traditions. The most venerable and white-bearded Pygmy had never heard of a time, even in his greatest of grandfathers' days, when the Giant was not their enormous friend.
Once, to be sure as was recorded on an obelisk, three feet high, erected on the place of the catastrophe , Antaeus sat down upon about five thousand Pygmies, who were assembled at a military review. But this was one of those unlucky accidents for which nobody is to blame; so that the small folks never took it to heart, and only requested the Giant to be careful forever afterwards to examine the acre of ground where he intended to squat himself.
It is a very pleasant picture to imagine Antaeus standing among the Pygmies, like the spire of the tallest cathedral that ever was built, while they ran about like pismires at his feet; and to think that, in spite of their difference in size, there were affection and sympathy between them and him! Indeed, it has always seemed to me that the Giant needed the little people more than the Pygmies needed the Giant.
For, unless they had been his neighbors and well wishers, and, as we may say, his playfellows, Antaeus would not have had a single friend in the world. No other being like himself had ever been created. No creature of his own size had ever talked with him, in thunder-like accents, face to face. When he stood with his head among the clouds, he was quite alone, and had been so for hundreds of years, and would be so forever.
Even if he had met another Giant, Antaeus would have fancied the world not big enough for two such vast personages, and, instead of being friends with him, would have fought him till one of the two was killed. But with the Pygmies he was the most sportive and humorous, and merry-hearted, and sweet-tempered old Giant that ever washed his face in a wet cloud.
His little friends, like all other small people, had a great opinion of their own importance, and used to assume quite a patronizing air towards the Giant. He is not half so bright as we are, to be sure; and, for that reason, he needs us to look after his comfort and happiness. Let us be kind to the old fellow. Why, if Mother Earth had not been very kind to ourselves, we might all have been Giants too. On all their holidays, the Pygmies had excellent sport with Antaeus. He often stretched himself out at full length on the ground, where he looked like the long ridge of a hill; and it was a good hour's walk, no doubt, for a short-legged Pygmy to journey from head to foot of the Giant.
He would lay down his great hand flat on the grass, and challenge the tallest of them to clamber upon it, and straddle from finger to finger. So fearless were they, that they made nothing of creeping in among the folds of his garments.
When his head lay sidewise on the earth, they would march boldly up, and peep into the great cavern of his mouth, and take it all as a joke as indeed it was meant when Antaeus gave a sudden snap of his jaws, as if he were going to swallow fifty of them at once. You would have laughed to see the children dodging in and out among his hair, or swinging from his beard.
It is impossible to tell half of the funny tricks that they played with their huge comrade; but I do not know that anything was more curious than when a party of boys were seen running races on his forehead, to try which of them could get first round the circle of his one great eye.
It was another favorite feat with them to march along the bridge of his nose, and jump down upon his upper lip. If the truth must be told, they were sometimes as troublesome to the Giant as a swarm of ants or mosquitoes, especially as they had a fondness for mischief, and liked to prick his skin with their little swords and lances, to see how thick and tough it was. But Antaeus took it all kindly enough; although, once in a while, when he happened to be sleepy, he would grumble out a peevish word or two, like the muttering of a tempest, and ask them to have done with their nonsense.
A great deal oftener, however, he watched their merriment and gambols until his huge, heavy, clumsy wits were completely stirred up by them; and then would he roar out such a tremendous volume of immeasurable laughter, that the whole nation of Pygmies had to put their hands to their ears, else it would certainly have deafened them. If I were not Antaeus, I should like to be a Pygmy, just for the joke's sake. The Pygmies had but one thing to trouble them in the world. They were constantly at war with the cranes, and had always been so, ever since the long-lived Giant could remember.
From time to time, very terrible battles had been fought in which sometimes the little men won the victory, and sometimes the cranes. According to some historians, the Pygmies used to go to the battle, mounted on the backs of goats and rams; but such animals as these must have been far too big for Pygmies to ride upon; so that, I rather suppose, they rode on squirrel-back, or rabbit-back, or rat-back, or perhaps got upon hedgehogs, whose prickly quills would be very terrible to the enemy.
However this might be, and whatever creatures the Pygmies rode upon, I do not doubt that they made a formidable appearance, armed with sword and spear, and bow and arrow, blowing their tiny trumpet, and shouting their little war cry. They never failed to exhort one another to fight bravely, and recollect that the world had its eyes upon them; although, in simple truth, the only spectator was the Giant Antaeus, with his one, great, stupid eye in the middle of his forehead.
When the two armies joined battle, the cranes would rush forward, flapping their wings and stretching out their necks, and would perhaps snatch up some of the Pygmies crosswise in their beaks. Whenever this happened, it was truly an awful spectacle to see those little men of might kicking and sprawling in the air, and at last disappearing down the crane's long, crooked throat, swallowed up alive.
A hero, you know, must hold himself in readiness for any kind of fate; and doubtless the glory of the thing was a consolation to him, even in the crane's gizzard. If Antaeus observed that the battle was going hard against his little allies, he generally stopped laughing, and ran with mile-long strides to their assistance, flourishing his club aloft and shouting at the cranes, who quacked and croaked, and retreated as fast as they could.
Then the Pygmy army would march homeward in triumph, attributing the victory entirely to their own valor, and to the warlike skill and strategy of whomsoever happened to be captain general; and for a tedious while afterwards, nothing would be heard of but grand processions, and public banquets, and brilliant illuminations, and shows of wax-work, with likenesses of the distinguished officers, as small as life.
In the above-described warfare, if a Pygmy chanced to pluck out a crane's tail feather, it proved a very great feather in his cap. Once or twice, if you will believe me, a little man was made chief ruler of the nation for no other merit in the world than bringing home such a feather. But I have now said enough to let you see what a gallant little people these were, and how happily they and their forefathers, for nobody knows how many generations, had lived with the immeasurable Giant Antaeus.
In the remaining part of the story, I shall tell you of a far more astonishing battle than any that was fought between the Pygmies and the cranes. One day the mighty Antaeus was lolling at full length among his little friends. His pine-tree walking stick lay on the ground, close by his side. His head was in one part of the kingdom, and his feet extended across the boundaries of another part; and he was taking whatever comfort he could get, while the Pygmies scrambled over him, and peeped into his cavernous mouth, and played among his hair.
Sometimes, for a minute or two, the Giant dropped asleep, and snored like the rush of a whirlwind. During one of these little bits of slumber, a Pygmy chanced to climb upon his shoulder, and took a view around the horizon, as from the summit of a hill; and he beheld something, a long way off, which made him rub the bright specks of his eyes, and look sharper than before. At first he mistook it for a mountain, and wondered how it had grown up so suddenly out of the earth.
But soon he saw the mountain move. As it came nearer and nearer, what should it turn out to be but a human shape, not so big as Antaeus, it is true, although a very enormous figure, in comparison with Pygmies, and a vast deal bigger than the men we see nowadays. When the Pygmy was quite satisfied that his eyes had not deceived him, he scampered, as fast as his legs would carry him, to the Giant's ear, and stooping over its cavity, shouted lustily into it:.
Get up this minute, and take your pine-tree walking stick in your hand. Here comes another Giant to have a tussle with you. Don't you see I'm sleepy? There is not a Giant on earth for whom I would take the trouble to get up. But the Pygmy looked again, and now perceived that the stranger was coming directly towards the prostrate form of Antaeus. With every step, he looked less like a blue mountain, and more like an immensely large man. He was soon so nigh, that there could be no possible mistake about the matter.
There he was, with the sun flaming on his golden helmet, and flashing from his polished breastplate; he had a sword by his side, and a lion's skin over his back, and on his right shoulder he carried a club, which looked bulkier and heavier than the pine-tree walking stick of Antaeus. By this time, the whole nation of the Pygmies had seen the new wonder, and a million of them set up a shout all together; so that it really made quite an audible squeak. Bestir yourself, you lazy old Giant!
Here comes another Giant, as strong as you are, to fight with you. Still the stranger drew nearer; and now the Pygmies could plainly discern that, if his stature were less lofty than the Giant's, yet his shoulders were even broader. And, in truth, what a pair of shoulders they must have been! As I told you, a long while ago, they once upheld the sky. The Pygmies, being ten times as vivacious as their great numskull of a brother, could not abide the Giant's slow movements, and were determined to have him on his feet.
So they kept shouting to him, and even went so far as to prick him with their swords. The strange Giant's club is bigger than your own, his shoulders are the broadest, and we think him the stronger of the two. Antaeus could not endure to have it said that any mortal was half so mighty as himself. This latter remark of the Pygmies pricked him deeper than their swords; and, sitting up, in rather a sulky humor, he gave a gape of several yards wide, rubbed his eyes, and finally turned his stupid head in the direction whither his little friends were eagerly pointing.
No sooner did he set eyes on the stranger, than, leaping on his feet, and seizing his walking stick, he strode a mile or two to meet him; all the while brandishing the sturdy pine tree, so that it whistled through the air. There was one strange thing about Antaeus, of which I have not yet told you, lest, hearing of so many wonders all in a lump, you might not believe much more than half of them. You are to know, then, that whenever this redoubtable Giant touched the ground, either with his hand, his foot, or any other part of his body, he grew stronger than ever he had been before.
The Earth, you remember, was his mother, and was very fond of him, as being almost the biggest of her children; and so she took this method of keeping him always in full vigor. Some persons affirm that he grew ten times stronger at every touch; others say that it was only twice as strong. But only think of it! The individual pieces of iron were made either from specially prepared clay molds, heated to circa degrees C.
Holes were punched using a hammer and spike. Corners were hammered on the anvil. Parts were filed where a close fit was needed. They were soldered together with tin. The springs on the back of the covers were often attached in this way. A pin joined two plates firmly if its ends, protruding from their holes in the plates, were flattened out with a hammer.
If a heated piece of iron was tightly fitted on to a cool piece, then the former, on cooling, contracted and fixed itself on the latter. Lastly, a pin could be hammered into a hole which is slightly too small, until the pin was wedged in. Realism is illustrated by the keyhole covers whose first aim is protection from the rain. It is usually obvious how to open these. The Classic covers are so called because they have an efficient and neat method of opening.
These padlocks have been sub-divided into two groups. In the first the practical technique has not always been perfected, whereas in the second, it has. Inclusion of a second group standard-of-technique in the first group, indicates that the cover is not classically ingenious. The Romantic style was the Mannerist conclusion following the Classic keyhole covers. When the best had been achieved the only apparent alternative was to become more clever and to invent slick, if not essential, ways of opening the keyhole cover.
In this desire for superficial cleverness, the disguise of the mechanism is sometimes lost. The keyhole cover becomes a toy. Although inventing keyhole covers is an individual art, lock-making is not. This difference 10 makes it possible to study the evolution of covers in various groups.
For example, the thirteen oblong padlocks, the three apple shaped padlocks, and the clock-faced padlocks [not all shown here] are suitable for comparison. Many of the others are too different to compare and are judged on their own.
Action: The cover is a thin hinged plate which is free to move. The mechanism must have been very susceptible to rusting for it never appears again. Action: The plate slides freely along the guides to reveal the keyhole. If there is a rod of iron in the dummy hinge surprisingly the upper one , and the lock is slightly rusty, then it would be difficult to reveal the keyhole. Action: When the knob is pressed upwards, and there is no rod hindering the dummy hinge, the cover is opened by the same method as No.
Action: If the two arrowed knobs are moved outwards, both halves of the catch, which is holding back the sprung keyhole cover, are released. There is a keyhole on each side of the chest. Action: When the points of application are pressed the two keyhole covers spring open.
The arrowed slab is internally welded to the arrowed hook, which is normally held down by a stiff spring. When the hook is lifted the cover escapes. The next group of five oblong padlocks, of which the first and last are selected were all made at the end of 12 the 17th century. The first two illustrate Classic covers, whereas the last three are Mannerist and Dating Romantic.
Chronologically, the comparison is as Very few of the examples have been, or can be, close as Raphael and Romano. However, it is possible roughly to date a lock by its mechanism and decoration. Hellner No. This gives a welcome since it is easy to lose. If the top peg is withdrawn, the All padlocks are given their Nordiska Museet keyhole cover springs open; since the peg holds it in numbers. Action: The lettered disc is turned by the screw- driver end of the key, inserted in A, until the correct letter is upright.
Then the key can turn. The key can only move when 14 the cut-out part of the sector allows it to pass, i. The disc wears down. Here the mechanism, No. It would be assumed to be part of the part of a simple lever. The second button is at the top operation of the lock and not the keyhole cover. A slight push will Action: When the hand of the clock is rotated, it open the second layer.
This frees the cover- covers made near the end of the 18th century, the first hook so that the lock is revealed. Romantic, the second Classic. The first is a Realist lock, the second is a Classic and the third is a Romantic. Although the pattern is identical on the rectangular plates on both sides of the padlock, the groove is only cut on one side. Action: The plate slides upwards under pressure and pivots about the top to reveal the keyhole.
But tae key will not fit in all the way. If the middle section of the decoration on the bottom of the plate on the other side is moved down with the finger nail, then the obstacle is removed and the key can enter.
Action: If the flat cylindrical knob is pushed in 18 the direction of the arrow, then the shaded portion springs up along its groove, revealing the keyhole. The knob is part of a latch which holds the moving part back against the pressure of a spring. It is easy to rub over the mark made by the moving part when it has been returned to its initial position.
Action: The keyhole cover swivels about 19 the pivot. Each of the four spoke-punched knobs can rotate and slide sufficiently to indicate that some combination of them should free the keyhole cover. However, the solution is to be found on the back of the lock where a slight lateral depression releases the keyhole. Action: The slab appears to be bolted fast by the two circular joints, but in fact the lower one supports the freeing lever.
Action: To unlock, the moveable block, which will only go into position the right way up and round, is removed. The shackle also can then be removed. If the key is now turned into the groove, it rigidly fixes the block. This hides the method of opening.
Hellner suggested that there might be a missing key. After discussion he agreed that this was a more likely solution. It has perhaps the most complicated keyhole cover of all the locks we have looked at. In this Viking replica lock, made of steel in the 19th century, there is an ordinary keyhole.
When the key is turned, the cover catch is pushed aside, allowing the real keyhole cover, which is hinged at one end, to open. The smiths are gone and men of their calibre now spend their time more profitably — or do they? However, I could design and organise their work. I Airforce , which explains why there are photos of boy Klokov relaxing with astronaut Yuri Gagarin.
In this heady milieu, AK was making jewel- still have the Kemitone Highway blue Clyno 10 encrusted Caucasian kinjal-type daggers, and restrained two-seater convertible, number-plate YL , which Japanese daggers and sheaths in wood and silver. Klokov I painstakingly restored. It when I was a student in Dear Suzanne Scott occurred to me that it was the duty of a collector to towed me away in the wreck, driving my Morris collect art by living as well as dead people.
As a romantic , with the purple curtains. In the late s I historical construct I was, aged nearly forty, acting out designed a steel I-shaped chair prototype and built a a Grand Tour to Moscow and the Caucasus. They never the English gentleman traveller, I should commission sold, but I enjoy designing. I drew Twenty five years may seem a long time to designs — I drew pistol knives, three-pronged forks and manufacture a bespoke cutlery service, FIG 7, 8 and of large bowled Byzantine spoons both with complex course there is a story behind it.
The opportunity Roman mounts about rat-tailed supports. He dinner service, which was a good sum in Russia in was virtually the only non-Caucasian to have mastered those days, though of far less relative value in London. I met him In Sasha visited me in London to talk to the in through his friend Sergei Klokov who was a Arms and Armour Society and showed me more and maverick young diplomat in the USSR national more developed work.
Bulat blades are made from a solid twisted cable of rope made from different steel wires. Gadji hammers the twisted cable at 3 4 degrees C in a charcoal furnace to form a bulat blade. There is a sand bowl to cool the blade on the floor. FIG 6 Gadji tests his bulat sabre blade by cutting a 7mm steel nail. I heard service except for the six placement knives. FIGS that he was ill and then that he had died at While he Six forks, six spoons, two serving spoons and a looked gentle enough, as an armourer he was amazingly carving knife and fork all eventually appeared.
I think strong. One night in the street in central Moscow he that he made an all ebony salad fork and spoon but it was strolling with some friends. Suddenly one of them did not fit in with the others and went back to him for was mugged. He rushed to their defence and pushed more work.
The spoons and forks have tapered reeded away the assailant who traveled through a plate glass handles while the carving knife has a larger reeded shop window and was duly decapitated. He was, of handle with a scrolled end.
He was always very white which I ascribed to the I was unable to find out if he had made the six poor food in Russia at that time. When he stayed with knives. He also had ten London in I never managed to track down his children and was only a couple of years older than me.
Klokov never found anything in his places in His family affairs were complex and mysterious, and Moscow. So I was left with a beautiful but incomplete he shrugged off questions with monosyllabic diplomatic service, perhaps his greatest work. The Chechen wars came in Square. They were very helpful and said yes of course beaten and chiselled silver forks and and it was impossible to visit Daghestan for many there was, and that he might be coming that day.
We spoon bowls, carved ebony handles years. Klokov had been over-drinking and his role had returned a few hours later and they said that he was with silver mounts, designed by disappeared with the collapse of the USSR. In not, but we should phone him. Gadji made by Aleksandr Kamiensky, and observer of the dishonest elections. At last, in Kurbankadievich Kurbankadiev and I quickly realised others, Moscow, Makhachkala and I returned to Daghestan, having waited forty days for a that I understood, and he understood that I London, , showing visa.
In Britain I had tried unsuccessfully to find a understood that he was the last bulat master in the fronts and backs. Daghestan, who had died aged sixty after an evening specially for this commission at I would send them my drawing. Then many months concert.
He had been a friend of Gadji and so Gadji my request. I had sadly given up on ever finding for six days and nights to make my blades. He stamped Kurbankadievich Kurbankadiev, another bulat armourer, or any blade maker. He gave them to me for one rouble each, which design. Magomedkhan we photographed. FIG 2 Money had to change hands Magomedkhanov, my old collaborator and friend, by tradition and law. At Moscow the silver parts and the handles were passed to master airport in spite of two scans nobody noticed the silversmith Peter Payne, retired senior silversmith at blades in my valise.
He fitted them individually to the handles It was only when I tried to make up the knives that and cut the rectangular holes for each slightly different I realised how many skills Sasha had mastered to make blade. It was expensive but it had taken severial days the other pieces. Back in Britain I used the whet stone work. Melvin Barrett fitted them all together.
He had given me by Gadji to begin the polishing. My London to finely chisel out tapered holes in the handles. They still needed a lot of work. His drills were not long enough I next found a polisher next to Melvin Barrett of Burwell to reach the bottom of the handles, so he ground the 9 my furniture restorer who buffed-up the blades. The ends of the tangs to fit into the locator holes drilled by blades needed the tangs to be longer so that the handles John James.
I then used and and vintage car restorer at Moulton near Newmarket wet-and-dry emery paper with water to bring up the welded them on and ground down the tapers on the water-marks in the blades. I then polished them with tangs. He also accurately drilled the vertical holes in Autosolve white cream. They still have longways grooves the handles using his vintage-car accurate set-up tools.
The odd thing is that the Daghestan wood-carver recommended by Jane Wainwright. Neither John James nor my friend and usual his head injury. As Melvyn suggested I used two coats who had further polished the blades, wanted to do the of Danish Oil to dull-polish the handles. I have not eaten with them yet, nor have I Through my old friend Nigel Israel the gemologist, sharpened the blades. I am in awe of my dinner service. It was thanks to resuming my friendship with The Mechanical Sciences Tripos at Cambridge was Anthony North and the late Clive Wainwright, both of quantitative and as a result I wrote only one essay the Victoria and Albert Museum, who would generously during three years.
It reached the final in the help me with my various collecting judgments. Most Engineering project lecture awards. The lubricious lunches attracted smashed meter. In spite of a rapturous reception, it plenty of interesting people. It became an institution. I complained and was told that it Will Allan, an old friend from Cambridge, would was not sufficiently about engineering. I later realised come along, and it soon became clear that he was that traffic engineering had not yet been invented.
The Tibetan-style demons wear loin-cloths and leggings decorated with stripes and rings. The chintamani can be seen in the centre of the palmettes. In fact I had radiographers — had succumbed to radioactive leaks. Our meeting occurred in Sadly she had sought solace in the gin bottle and there a roundabout way. The Monbiot brothers were also at were large wardrobes filled with empties. Unkind Fonthill prep-school and their kind mother, Mrs Ruth puns were made about her surname.
As well as her fascinating stories there was the Gardens end. When he duly submitted my monograph, he was outraged and embarrassed by the following leaden corporate reply, which he presented to me with a sabre flourish to distance himself. Caroline, with great tenacity, had 6 learnt Turkish by living in Turkey and was looking to FIG 4 Seljuk 13th-century bronze doctor came and quietly told me never to buy gin for research into something linked with Turkish history.
I refused and had to tell her The crescents that were used as finials of battle standards FIG 5 Mosaic crown with crescent why: I was unwilling to be party to her death, so she led seamlessly to her MA on the sancak an Ottoman pendant, Kubbat al-Sakra, threw me out. I had to sell my Spanish guitar. One rather well-rounded campaign, and her ensuing fame as a historian.
Cresswell, boy had his right hand behind his back. We chatted ; Oleg Grabar, Variations, such as three balls on their own, Nuremberg museum. EI II idem. Marcus Morris of the Eagle comic and single malts. The following attempts to trace the FIG 7 Star and crescent inlaid We met again eight years later, and again, and again. Talbot-Rice, But it was not to be. Will of the golden period of the Ottomans, about However, its earliest with silver wrapped twill, late 15th- appearance with wavy lines is on robes and leggings century, Bursa, chintamani with which appear in a tomb painting in Turfan circa velvet spots, in the rings, which ACE.
The Buddhist meaning is three pearls unusually vary in size. FIG 10 Sultan Suleiman the This study also follows the development of the Magnificent's silk trousers decorative motif through many cultures, which shalvar , midth century, provides insight into two controversies.
Gold background decorative art is transmitted by movement of peoples and silver designs seraser with light as opposed to separate development by indigenous green outlines. Nevber Gursu, inventiveness. Second, it explores the relation of a The Art of Turkish Weaving, naturalistic decoration to its abstract symbol. XVI culture by a ruling elite from nomadic roots, it was FIG 11 Silk banner of Sultan used principally in royal, city and town workshops.
It Selim I the Grim, circa , is a cosmic symbol. Dark red with gold more usual sources, such as signs of plants, like the and green brocade decoration, length Tree of Life; animals, like the Sun-Bird or Tao Tieh cm. Inscriptions at both ends are masks; or humans, like the Protective Hand. XVII museums. One unsolved puzzle is why the Turk Mehmet II, conqueror of Constantinople in , adopted the sign and why it thereafter appeared and developed in Turkey, but never in Persia? FIG 2 The chintamani can be seen in the centre of the palmettes.
It was reminiscent of some 16 Ottoman silk brocades and velvets in the Moscow State collections, which demonstrated its popularity in Russia during the 16th and 17th centuries. More research into its origin and development beckoned. So did the wise man, teacher and historian Ibn Khaldun sincerely flatter Timur — Sahib Qiran, Lord of the Fortunate Conjunction, at their historic meeting outside the besieged walls of Damascus in He wrote that as well as his own teacher, there was Ibn Zarzar, the Jewish physician and astrologer to the King of the Franks, who shared this prediction when they met in , as did the Magrib 12 Sufis who made similar claims for Egypt.
Walter J. Fischel, Ibn Khaldun and Tamurlane, It is known that Timur was interested in religion, mysticism and astrology. He used the symbol of three rings forming an inverted triangle as the sign of his heavenly mandate. Hilda Hookham, Tamerlane the Conqueror, , Ill. A similar seal was affixed to his letter to Charles VI of France.
Clavijo also noted the emblem on the walls of the palace that Timur built at his birthplace — Shahrisyabz — and tactfully surmised that Timur was indeed lord of all three portions of the world. Since there was another similar conjunction of the planets in , the use of this sign would have been a self-fulfilled prophecy for public consumption.
Local interest in astrology in Transoxania led to the construction of a huge astronomical sextant in Tillikan in , decorated with the signs of the Zodiac. He uprooted trees, lifted immovable rocks, ate and drank prodigiously, completed many heroic missions, including slaying a dragon and at last died having lived for years, only because he slew Isfandiyar. Although a benevolent hero, he was related through his mother to the devil-king Dahak, from whom he inherited the strength of a demon.
His dualism must have appealed to the Manichaean tradition in Iran. The epic was also noted about the same time by Moses of Khorene in his History of the Armenians. Rustam first appears in a tiger skin in the Rashid- al-Din manuscript. Robinson, The Connoisseur, He first appears in a snow leopard-head helmet in the British Museum Shiraz manuscript of , and thereafter only in Shiraz manuscripts until , generally wearing both skin and helmet.
Tigers seem to have been considered sufficiently ferocious to be slain with honour by a hero. The shamanic use of sympathetic magic to transfer the power and attributes of the slain beast to his victor is similar to the story of Heracles who, according to Herodotus, was a legendary father of the Iranian Scyths. The spots of the chintamani evolved into crescents in 14 the Islamic world, which have a separate origin.
It seems wearing costumes decorated with Tibetan-style demon wears a fur-edged, possibly fur that although the crescent was not used as a national Ottoman chintamani. Only the or textile loin-cloth, decorated with stripes and rings. Although symbol — probably under the influence of Arabic Within the possessor all his desires as it rises from the waters of It also appears in the mosaics of the Kubbat al-Sakra medallions, the stripes have small abundance.
Other examples from China show the in Jerusalem, which was converted into a mosque circa spots inside them and the crescents sign as an aura of single pearls rising from the striped ACE. FIG 5 It is represented as the customary finial have become tulips, carnations and water symbols radiating from the Buddha.
FIG 3 Although fantastic tigers are Iran as well as records of local tiger hunting up to the In the Magrib, the Fatimids produced crescent- 19th century. Crescents mingled with tulips grow on stalks over saw-toothed stripes, redolent of Mughal Indian herbal style. Black silk outlining missing. It the Mamluks in The crescent virtually does bears the name of the Caliph al-Zahir , and not appear in Ottoman art before about , when it was later converted into a gothic monstrance.
The crescent was also a repeated element on an huge battle-standard of paraded on Mamluk bronze battle standard finials, Selim I, the Grim, FIG 11 probably again as symbolic though not on the Ottoman equivalents before The earliest known occurrence in post-Islamic About the same time, an entirely Ottoman symbol Turkey is the inlaid stonework on the church of St appeared — a synthesis of three facing crescents over Sophia in Trebizond, dating from the midth two wavy stripes in Iznik ceramic tiles and vessels FIG 13 century, identified by David Talbot-Rice in FIG 7 as well as silk brocades, embroideries and various In contemporary Seljuk metalwork, the crescent carpets.
Such a dish, dated , is illustrated appears as the moon surrounding the face of the in Iznik, Nurhan Atasoy and Julian Raby, , pl. Zodiac figure of Cancer or flanked by twin dragons The carpets include Ushak rugs such as the red representing an eclipse. Cambridge, and some Cairene rugs. These and other The Ottomans started to use the stripes and rings objects throughout the Ottoman empire used this after the conquest of Constantinople.
FIG 9 permanent Turkish embassy was established in The the same size. It is possible that these few examples, rings were changed to crescents to symbolize the defeat which have spots rather than the later relatively more of the Mamluks and their Arab empire in This combination of different astrological, Islamic and Shamanist symbols, of course, is unrelated to the Buddhist chintamani.
There are equally pleasing derivatives. A peculiar Ottoman version appears in the central and corner medallions of a Cairene court carpet made between and , with typical double weft and warps of golden yellow wool both S4Z ply and twist FIG The stripes have small spots inside them and the crescents have become tulips, carnations and roses, growing through the tendrilled stripes. A similar striped and crescent fragment is illustrated by Louise Mackie in the Washington Textile Museum Journal, vol.
IV, 3, The central rosette is similar to the one on the Boston Iznik plate illustrated in Fig. The sign became elaborated on later Ottoman embroideries FIG 15, such as the midth century embroidered silk bohca cover, about a metre square, where crescents mingled with tulips grow on stalks over saw-toothed stripes, redolent of Mughal Indian herbal style.
Another late 17th century bohca FIG 16 has large serrated-leaf crescent-shaped balls interspersed with smaller more conventional balls. Both of these show that pleasing aspect of Ottoman design — the overall infinite pattern, slightly skewed in the field to suggest dynamic tension, yet stabilized by a border of the same pattern.
Two of our guests were from Kelaty, who had long carpet trade links with USSR, Soviet Azerbaijan — a political apparatchik Gasan kindly had arranged a very quiet exhibition of his rugs Huseinov and the designer and locally-recognised which included the Gagarin rug with the border that Soviet Azerbaijani carpet authority Latif Kerimov.
As featured Laika the space dog in her fish-tank helmet. He only had time for Azerbaijani Carpet Symposium in Baku in September me to photograph him in front of the world-famous , where I gave two talks. Ardabil rug. The photo speedily appeared in, I think, The most memorable event was on day three when Baku Pravda with his claim that it was a stolen national Kerimov hysterically interrupted Armenian museum treasure.
He screamed that other Azerbaijani rugs as he could adequately identify no Armenians had woven rugs before the Soviet them from the black-and-white photocopies of the Revolution and that he, and only he, knew the secrets catalogue photos of the hundred or so rugs which the of Caucasian rugs. He then had a mild heart attack. Museum had kindly provided.
The photo of one long rug needed two by Major-General Sir Robert Murdoch-Smith during photocopies which had become separated. The Pastiche group, as I called them, were woven cypress tree pastiche, circa , in the region south of the great Caucasus mountains location not known. The rugs do not boast designs reflecting a traditional tribal memory, nor do they show the hand of a designer.
In the following catalogue ten attributions for each half. It illustrated historic examined. The second talk was to the rugs. The selected listing below is followed by a brief packed Geography Institute of the Azerbaijan Academy geographic and historic survey to indicate where, of Sciences.
The maps had been banned by Stalin and, when, and for whom they were produced. FIG 2 The consistently uncertain drawing mounted hunting pastiche border avoids curves, which are in fact nicely drawn in the cartouches, circa , Istanbul, border. The typical soft colours, reminiscent of Turk v Islam Eserleri Museum. Apart from typical guard stripes, the border is copied from the strap-work design Hunting on Horseback popular in 16th century northwest Persian rugs.
In Detail of Poldi Pozzoli Hunting Carpet 16th century the field, spiky cloud-bands and peacocks are usual. A normal saddle outline was drawn in black, but the embroiderer filled-in the spaces. The Turk ve Islam Museum rug FIG 9 emphasized the wide cartouche border with horsemen in fabulous headdress, flanked by pairs of deer, contained by typical guard stripes.
The field has a medallion, cartouche and pendant design with cypress trees. FIG 10 There are men with guns, who crouch next to vertical deer decorated with chevrons similar to a dragon copy. The main border is taken from a northwest Persian cartouche design.
It houses the largest collection by far of have typical borders derived from dragon technique both old dragon technique and Pastiche rugs. Another eclectic mix is in a detail of the Abegg Stiftung in Berne. FIG 13 Similar to the corner central medallion of my 18th century silk embroidery motifs in the rugs, the velvet contains naturalistic fish, enclosing an Ottoman tulip, a duck and a dented ducks and men in galleons, of the artistry of court horseman with his Shiraz-Qasvin-style turban.
FIG 8 miniature paintings. FIG 16 Indo-Persian woollen rug, garden concentric medallion and water and fish corners, Portuguese ships pastiche, 18th century, Berlin, Dahlem Museums. FIG 18 Mughal India, woollen? FIG 19 Azerbaijan pre-Treaty of Turkmanchai , woollen rug, plants from herbals and central pond pastiche, 18thth century, Lon- don, Private Collection. FIG 20 Herat, woollen rug, cloud bands and scrolling palmettes, late 18 19 16th century, location not known.
FIG 21 Azerbaijan pre-Treaty with a typical border copied from a dragon technique in length, with fish and water in the corners like those of Turkmanchai , woollen rug, rug. The concentric palmette-filled medallions are usually seen in Pastiche garden carpets with typical cloud bands and scrolling palmettes similar to later Heriz rugs. Gardens and Water dragon type border. FIG 24 Medallion cartouche carpet, northwest Iran, first half 16th century. Austrian Museum of Applied Arts, Vienna, inv.
The Pastiche has straight stems, thick Pastiche guard and main borders. A similar version leaves and regular sprays of three flowers. The Pastiche is from a private collection in London. Arabesques Local access to Indian rugs for Caucasians who From Lyon Museum, FIG 22 is an early 17th century were wealthy enough to commission rugs, was possible Kashan silk rug with rows and columns of inverted because in Nadir Shah took Kakheti nobles with arabesques.
A Metropolitan Museum mystery rug which him on his conquest of India as hostages for the good at first looks like a Lotto design FIG 23 is actually a behaviour of their relatives back in Tiflis. He began from the centre Herat is a relatively common carpet, considering its outwards, exactly opposite to my own method. Turkmanchai , woollen rug, typical Pastiche borders and wonky drawing. Dragon Menagerie nation-state concepts of borders hardly applied then.
This classic dragon technique rug FIG 26 with a full set So it would be more useful to begin by examining the of beasts is from an Italian collection. The Wher geography and history of Transcaucasia. Collection dragon drop repeat Pastiche rug, is usually The earliest comprehensive and accurate map thought to have been made in the Shirvan Khanate.
Montieth FIG 27 In the Pastiche, one half of the classical combat of the Madras Engineers, gold medallist of the Royal pair, the chilin appears immediately beneath the Geographic Society. It corrected existing Russian dragon half-way down the rug which is 3. Carriage-bearing roads i. Another dragon Pastiche were marked by double lines in red, and donkey rug has copied copies of all the classical beasts. FIG 28 tracks, more vulnerable to mountain robbers, by The filling of the confronting deer with vertical bands single lines.
FIG 10 Also it is framed with typical line to Tiflis present day Tbilisi , and was completed Pastiche guard stripes and a copy of the dragon border in Two details FIGS 29, 30 show cotton warp and weft. The The distance from Tiflis to Tabriz is about miles, abrasive cotton warps and wefts often destroyed the so all these towns are quite close.
Pastiche rugs have different technical History of the Caucasus, the collapse of the Safavid dynasty features. Some have cotton warps and wefts, others in caused a power vacuum. Both were pushed out by British, Dutch and Hansa vessels on the Caspian Sea, Nadir Shah whose conquering career was ended by to avoid the dreaded Lezghin mountain robbers in the assassination in , the last time the Persians were Samur River region.
During the six wars between established north of the River Araks. These events Russia and Turkey between and , which indirectly influenced the formation of an ill-fated resulted in Russia taking the Crimea, the east coast of Caucasian confederation which was ineffectively ruled the Black Sea, Transcaucasia south to the river Araks, from Tiflis by Irakli II from to By his and west almost to Kars, must have impeded the so-called kingdom was under Russian protection, and transport of goods along the road to Tokat.
Routledge technique rugs reached Turkey, their principal Atlas of Russian History, first edition, source, before Conversely, since only one of Before the Georgian Military highway was built, these rugs is known to me in Russia, published in Alikberov and Gadjiev, , few appear to have been left when Potemkin arrived. But with one rug surviving in Russia FIG 31 and about a hundred in and via Turkey, we have too small a sample to be sure.
However, it is plausible that these rugs were made in or near towns that reflected access to originals and other copies. Local potentates, such as King Irakli II of Georgia and downwards, or wealthy merchants, likely commissioned the rugs. However other copies, together suggest a close group. They are finer and so some seventy languages, under attack or inhabiting Textile Museum.
In If Pastiche rugs confirm status, they plausibly other materials, copying of metal, stone and used established court models. In contrast, the less woodwork was a flourishing industry in Kubachi near formal embroideries copied current more expensive Derbend, which, as Dr Anatoli Ivanov of the State silks and velvets.
Hermitage demonstrated, carried on throughout the 19th century. It is apparently dated a designed and a copied rug. Slowly, knots, FIG 32 a practice which I have previously seen, titters and laughter followed. Then, embarrassed inter alia on a very fine Daghestan prayer rug. However the regular knot count of and we are often reluctant to observe style. Coupled with the dated decided to drive there to have a look for themselves. As far as I know no one managed to penetrate the watchful eye of the Imam to professionally photo- graph all the rugs.
FIG 4 2 We then befriended the extended family who lived opposite the Mosque under the benign rule of the matriarch and waited for 36 hours during which I performed a solo dance at a night time pre-wedding ceremony in front of a hundred men-folk in a nearby village.
The rugs were all under a layer of modern rugs. FIG 3 They were often piled on top of each other. Three strong Turks rapidly revealed the old rugs on a very hot day. These hurried conditions meant that I had to take the photos of the rugs indoors on the floor, without sufficient lighting, so the 35mm slides have a blue or yellow cast. We have attempted to correct this using Photoshop technology. Nevertheless, they are the only known record of what was in the mosque.
The mosque dedicatory carved stone plaque is dated AH CE. The The mosque is called the Osman Bey mosque after CE, with minaret CE, four square columns taper at the the patron of the later minaret, which was added on Sivas Province, Turkey. Lower rug is detail of fig Several of the old rugs were rug with gul web lattice design, Ankara. In addition, rugs were used to cover the dead taken to Istanbul for the conference in and kept harlequin lozenges as in Group 3, on their way to the mosque where they were then there afterwards, but the plan remains a record of the and yellow tamga emblem border, borne in an open coffin to the grave.
They were numbers and types of examples. They were mainly in red ground, Group 2, circa CE. It is likely that the brilliant hues medallion overlaid with similar example on the cover of this book; 11 rugs with a of the blues, dark greens and yellows were produced guls, related to gul web lattice staggered octagonal lattice, similar to the rug in the with a madder top dye as well.
If so, they provide a firm date to compare other non-court style central medallion rugs, several examples of which may be seen in the museums in Istanbul. There are now a few others, for example the Kirch- heim rug. The ground of some examples with 'Alam battle-standard' design, is camel hair which is thought to be a feature of tribal and 8-pointed star border, apricot 18 weaving, rather than from a town workshop.
So many rugs and S border, orange-apricot are dated i. Another theory is that it coincides with with 'Alam battle-standard' design, Napoleonic influence in the region where standards and classic scrolling palmette border, of measurement were imposed. The star border on ivory ground, Group 3, circa CE. Another example, FIG 13, again shares with diagonally staggered large and its weave and pallete as well as its dimensions of about small hexagonal guls, derived from 5ft by 8ft with Group 3.
There is also a cruder version Group 2 and 3 gul designs, and S of the design, possibly a later example, FIG 20 next to border, red ground, midth century. In fact warps and two red wool wefts,four cord red selvedges and S border, apricot ground, Group it could have been copied straight from an Ushak and red kilim ends. Also the half cut design on the lower visually and I think we should look nearer the tribal circa CE. FIG 14 The peculiar tamga border is on Ottoman battle standards alam , as well as other sun and FIG 18 showing typical red a yellow ground which was a popular colour balance.
FIG 19 Another variant is the collection. This provided greater mosque all of roughly the same size and identical weave. FIG 20 In the same photo, variety of drawing with and Two examples FIGS 16, 17 feature the most common above the previous rug, is another example on the lines in addition to the usual It is typical unusual apricot ground.
Group 5, circa CE. A smaller rug from a private collection FIGS 22, 24 unusually has the field filled with a single unit of the design and a main border design found in Ladik coupled-column rugs woven around This knotting also occurs in symmetrically knotted Yomut Turkmen pieces and Kurdish Iranian rugs.
FIG 28 A related octagon rug FIG 30 shares the asymmetrical tamga emblem border typical of Group 4 rugs, as well as the colours and weave of the other mosque rugs. FIG 32 Two other prayer rugs FIGS 31, 33 have weave, colour range and yellow border designs typically found in Groups 2 and 3, unlike FIGS 34, 35 with their strange key-hole shaped mihrabs and simple border designs, which are more crudely woven. Group 6: Miscellaneous There are seven other unusual rugs described for convenience as Miscellaneous.
This name has no stylistic implications. This is the only occurrence of such a widespread phenomenon. In the same picture is an apparently unique diagonal interlocking band latch-hook design rug. It was a small town, apparently with little socio-economic significance. If the rugs were commercial products from a cottage industry like Ghiordes, Ladik or Melas, they 37 would surely have been found in 19th century collections in other parts of Turkey.
So, because of their limited occurrence they would seem to be tribal rugs using designs withvestiges of a tribal character, made by local Turkmen Bozulu or Zulkadirli tribes. I have photos and rubbings of the originals. Inscription 1 FIG 4 on a carved stone plaque set in the mosque wall. The favour of God has been shewn to rule the world, that all His creatures live in fear of him. That is by abcet or numerismic reduction, The confederation of about 10, people was made up of two Turkmen groups, the Bozulus from Halep, also called Halep Turkmenleri, who travelled 39 there for summer grazing, and the Zulkadirli who were settled there, originally from Maras.
Inscription 2 FIG 5 on a carved stone plaque set in the minaret wall Praise be to God the minaret is completed, O God do not burn its builder in fire hell. He displayed his magnanimity to the people. May he be guided to heaven. Haji Efendi was the initiator of this. May God always command good for him. Buna baics olan Haci Efendi Huda zatin ide hayre emare.
The date of this work. He with pleasant manner built it. Here seven prominent dealers of rugs and kilims, most of whom are covering their faces or turned away, were detained by the authorities and outed in a daily newspaper. Unless indicated otherwise, all photos are by Robert Chenciner, taken during FIG 2 Dragon detail of fragment of a 17th-century Dragon rug, showing characteristic irregular thick wefts.
Private collection. Wher collection; Yetkin, Aged without notes or preparation on all aspects of six, I dreamt of a cinema-screen sky filled with symbolism that naturally included dragons, diagonally descending stripes of snapping carnivorous Cammann, Aged from Yahya Arhan. Aram was then a very old man and he Mosque built in , and the dusty piles of early had a sort of small shop in the Old Market where he dragon and related carpets inside, which have long- sat all day.
Above his head was a ramshackle plank since been moved to the Vakiflar Museum in Istanbul, floor on which it became clear that a hundred dusty Ellis, As Ellis observed, and is now well- treasures were piled up. The fragment was published in metres long and 3 metres wide. In addition they were , Chenciner, The article was inspired in woven in a distinctive technique with heavy ribbed when I arranged for Schuyler van R.
In spite of continuing searches, I have never seen or heard of one of these anywhere in the Caucasus from the time of my first visit in , and during my long collaboration with my co-author Magomedkhan Magomedkhanov, right through to , with the exception of a gift of one or two from the Armenian Diaspora to the Yerevan carpet museum, of the Republic of Armenia.
John Wertime and Richard 2 Wright have convincingly related these early dragon rugs technically to later 19th century Heriz or Tabriz rugs which implied a geographical origin from Persian Azerbaijan 4 in North West Iran, while leaving the question of the ethnicity of the weavers open.
Heriz is about 50 miles east of Tabriz and about 70 miles west of Astara on the Caspian, the present frontier with Republic of Azerbaijan, Wertime et al. Makhachkala Art School. Photo: Derbent region, 19th century. FIG 3. The unusually large designs came from collections outside Daghestan. FIG 7 during 16th century. FIG 10 cartouche rugs, and pictorial rugs with people, Magomedkhanov commented that while the Dragon horses, and wild or fabulous animals. Certainly Derbent is the centre of among the about 50 photographs which we discovered regional soumakh weaving, but one also finds in Dagestan, in the Makhachkala Art School pattern soumakh weavings in Anatolia and Iran.
I Vernis with characteristic squared S-shaped was able to photograph their photographs in From the Azerbaijani began in the early 19th century after pacification of point of view, Kubra Abdullaeva ascribed them to the region that followed the Russian conquest and Karabakh, Abdullaeva, Carpet long and relatively narrow at about 1.
FIG 11 Davaghin detail, showing rukhzal house design related to Rekom shrine, 19th century. FIGS 33, 34 Private collection. FIG 12 Verni with characteristic squared S-shaped serpent-dragon design, probably Karabakh, 19th century. FIG 13 Dum detail, showing dragon and simurgh, with dragon similar to a Chechen tower, FIG 15 as outlined in bright white cotton against wool, 19th century.
FIG 16 The Kircheim rug attrib- uted to Azerbaijan, carbon dated to 13th - 14th century, a possible ancestor of the dragon dums. Franses, et al. FIG 16 because the woman weaver used her hand as a heddle, Another two dums appear to have many-headed and only had short - say ten-minute - breaks for dragon designs. The Chechen istang felt mosaic carpet weaving, from a heavy work load. Their typical palette design, Tataev, , transferred to a dum FIG 17 is an indigo blue ground with red designs outlined in may be a many-horned design, or it may represent a yellow white and or brown, with small use of other stylized many-headed dragon, or, as is often the case colours.
Dums and davaghins are known by both with symbols, both. The earliest representation of a names and were woven by Avars and Kumyks in many-headed dragon from Azerbaijan is 9th to 8th central Daghestan, Salmanov, et al. Surviving century BCe, see below. FIG 19 to have a genuine i. There are some 30 related to a variety of sources such as Persian Garden different principal designs among the several hundred rugs, Palmette rugs, Tree rugs; Turkic Animal rugs; rugs that I have seen.
One of the designs is the Small-Pattern Turkish village rugs; and north Caucasian Dragon dum which Paul Ramsay has written about, Shrine rukhzal designs. FIG 11 Accordingly, there is Ramsey, There are about a dozen known that little indication of the origin of the dragon designs to survive. All that I can add is that the examples be deduced from other dum and davaghin designs.
Dargi region that also surrounds Kubachi village David Hunt commented that in Caucasian folklore inland from Derbent are usually about 1 to 1. In the late s an old in a lower world, from which he is rescued by a large narrow cart-width roadway was discovered from bird that flies him up to this world; the bird is grateful Derbent to Kubachi. The embroideries had various that he has killed the dragon and so saved her ritual uses: to cover the cradle to protect a baby from nestlings from it.
It may be a many-horned design, or it may represent a stylized many- headed dragon, or both. FIG 18 Earliest representation of a many-headed dragon from Azerbaijan, see lower right hand side. Tehran Museum.
FIG 22 The ceramic design link would near Buinakst, 19th century. There are some ten known versions of this whirling kylins. In this Makhachkala example the alternating rows are filled with four FIG 22 Typical traditional home 18 symmetrical triangles each filled with a stylized dragon main guest room in Kubachi village, and tailed-simurgh conflict, idem, plate 7, page 60; with dowry display of ceramic plates plate 10, page FIG 24 that include 17th- and 18th-century Persian blue-and-white dishes.
Objects already described are omitted, for example the carved stone kylin from Kubachi. The earliest representations of dragons in the Caucasus are feet tall cigar-shaped monoliths 8 in mountain locations in present-day Armenia, and other parts of the ancient Urartu region Gegharkunik, Aragatsotn, Javakhk and Tayk , where they were erected at river and lake sources by the ancient pagan inhabitants, and are thought to have been guardians of primal water.
FIG 27 The earliest date from the 18thth centuries BCe or earlier 9; an Urartian inscription on 19 a vishap from Garni testifies that they were created in relatively few dragons. One 18th century or earlier Kaitag embroidery is According to Petrosyan vishap is a loan word from filled with whirling kylins. Petrosyan linked the iconography on the of State Hermitage, St Petersburg relief-carved argillite stones with the Ullikummi myth. The Hurrian and curved-arch window-surround from Kubachi village, Urartian languages represent two branches of the FIG 21 where there are also houses filled with dowry Hurro-Urartaian language family, while Armenian is displays of ceramic plates that include 17th and 18th an Indo-European language.
The name Ullikummi century Persian blue-and-white dishes. Gasanli is about 25 miles north-west of Lenkoran, Efendiev, FIG 18 Much later, Persian court painting frequently portrayed dragons, often breathing fire, in scenes 21 painted by succeeding generations of painters, inspired by the national epic Shahname, or Book of Kings, written by Firdawsi, circa CE. Iranian authors consider that the Shahname was genuinely popular with the whole population because it survived the Mongol invasions and was recited for centuries as public performance and entertainment, Bashiri, There where in one scene an apparently docile small dragon are about ten known versions of this is being slain.
FIG 29 In 16th and 17th century court relatively popular design, usually paintings and book covers there were models for court under-drawn in black or red. The became a popular decorative device. An example is a alternating rows are filled with four late 16th century silk kelim, one of about 50 that are symmetrical triangles, each filled known, with a central medallion with a beautiful with a stylized dragon and tailed- dragon and simurgh conflict.
Compared to ceramics simurgh in conflict. FIG 30 scale. Kouymjian, The leaping-running- of Lake Sevan. Many take the shape dancing composite satyr-like creature has a dragon of a large tailless whale. Armenian head, a humanoid body, large clawed feet and a National Museum. Petrosyan, flowing tendril serpent wrapped about its waist. There is a similar use of dragon finials on ridge beams in Norwegian stave churches, Allen et al. FIG 31 is nevertheless based on a historical source.
It is feet, with a stream of water flowing A favourite Viking route to the Caspian was down reminiscent of the Celtic double-ended firedog in the from its mouth. Drawing: the Kura river to reach the Caspian. The first 19th century, centred around the Perevidniki Wanderers Petrosyan,? Examples are found in Dragon, Shahname, Shiraz, , voyage in , Markaryan, ; Hagerman, With regard to woodwork, in Daghestan chairs of Vasnetsov.
Ivanov and V. Toporov, tells the story of the and stone, to 17thth centuries, intricate interlaced battle of the thunder god and his adversary the serpent. GOOD dragons. In the legends there 29 were also evil ones. As an example, in Virsaladze No. Sevan modern Gegharkunik province of Armenia. Bier et al. Characteristically, , Kubachi.
Moreover, the which tradition has survived there to dragon stones themselves probably would have been the present day. In the Hurrian myth, attested in the 2th millennium BCe, Kumarbi, the father and adversary of Teshub, plots to overthrow him. Photo: Debirov, Wooden walls with swollen facetted wood columns similar to the miniature column on the Elena Polenova at Abramtsevo workshop cabinets, circa The entry for priests through the small wooden door is decorated with wrought iron work in a felt design.
Skulls and 32 horns of sacrificed bulls and tur goats are displayed outside. Small shrines of this type were widespread in the north Caucasus. The gods battle the no other data on this interesting term, but it may be monster, but it has grown so big that they are unable considered in the context of Armenian and Indo- to harm it. The end of the myth is not preserved but European onomastics. Since in folk tradition the two probably contained the final victory of the weather god.
This cannot be interpreted otherwise than as an imitation of the bull sacrifice ritual. That is, the bull, symbol of the thunder god, appears to have been sacrificed to the giant fish, symbol of the serpent. Why imitate the ritual instead of performing a real sacrifice? The Hurrian and Urartian languages represent two branches of the Hurro-Urartaian language family, while Armenian is an Indo-European language.
The name Ulikummi, as we have seen, may well be borrowed from Indo-European, yet scholars regard the Ullikummi myth as entirely Hurrian, not Indo- European. Much has now been recorded by local researchers, and a selection of translated material is given below. There are words for dragon in all 35 the Caucasian languages Held; Sanikidze et al. It is well known that the hero Georgian-Kartalian Arts and Crafts, of that name is the central character of the eponymous 19th century, Russian Ethnography epic of Ancient Mesopotamia [ miles south of Museum, St Petersburg.
Dmitriev, Daghestan]. The other is Ishtar. The Laki people V. The Caucasus has also been described as a mountain of religions and dragons appear in many religious texts. Widespread iconoclastic destruction of pagan monuments by the early Christians of Armenia and Georgia mean that few survive there, however the oral tradition continued. These ancient religions were also developed in the Caucasus and preceded and survived beneath the monotheistic religions.
In the Caucasus animism or nature worship can be considered to have various levels. The most basic was worship of local objects such as mountains, water vishap stones , fire, wind and earth. The dragon in ancient Iran was considered as 40 Thirdly was the conceptual development of polytheistic ahriman devil and according to Zoroastrian belief, FIG 37 Dragon and Tsephei worship of gods associated with, but distinct from the once Ahura-Mazda created the first land called Arya- constellation, carved stone, pre-1st original objects, Chenciner et al.
Veij, the devil created the azhi, a strong and harmful millennium BCE. As with the large Astral cult followers are still to be found from snake, which killed Fereydoun, the monarch. Zahhak is number of carvings of other tattoos on Dargi mountain village women in a fearful dragon in Avesta, while in Pahlavi literature constellations, it is remarkably Daghestan Chenciner et al.
Three thousand he is an Arab man attacking Iran, overcoming similar to much later drawings of the years earlier in present-day Armenia among, Jamshid, who after years of vicious rule was same constellations by, for example, according to Sargsyan et al. In Avesta aschmogh is represented after Firmamentum Sobies- Yerevan and Lake Sevan, are carvings of several the Fall as having lost its nature and its name, and is cianum, Sargsyan, et al.
Draco , which have been dated by G. FIG 37 The drawing of the of the god Vahagn, god of war, bravery and victory and century, The Book of Fixed constellation is similar to a Persian late 14th drawing dragon-slayer, which is preserved in Movses Stars. Allen et al. FIG 38 In addition, there is a Russell traced through countless other works. Russell, early 13th century, Cizre Ulu Camii, resemblance to the great confronting dragon Seljuk He also drew attention to the Hymn of the Pearl one of several similar examples, Turk early 13th century copper alloy doorknocker from in the apocryphal gospel of Thomas, where he identified ve Islam Eserleri Muzesi, Istanbul.
Zoroastrian and Valenciennes , fol.
A short time ago, I was favored with a flying visit from my young friend Eustace Bright, whom I had not before met with since quitting the breezy mountains of Berkshire.
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