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v1.03 preface
v1.03 cover
v1.03 contents:
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The Celtic Art Coracle Volume 1 Issue 3 
ZOOMORPHIC ART The Development of Intertwining Zoomorphic Art from Mesopotamia to the Golden Age of Irish Art - Gabriole Sinclair (continued)

Dated at the end of the 8th century, probably belonging to the Iona foundation, the Book of Kells is the supreme achievement of Celtic art. No other manuscript approaches it in the richness of its detail, including zoomorphics of such incredible delicacy that the unaided eye cannot entirely see the microscopic perfection and intricacy of the work.

The new element in the zoomorphic repertory of the Book of Kells is that of the anthropomorphic interlacement, introducing the human contortionist with a touch of drollerie.

Perhaps it is this inclusion of the human figure among the birds, dogs, serpents and trees-of-life that populate the abstract ornamentation of this rich piece of art that gives it a cohesion and an unity that is overwhelming.

Such fanciful and graceful expression of ornament, arrived at through the experience of early Christianity in Ireland, is the height of Celtic art; but to bring it to such a high point it took the combination of many elements from many other cultures who all contributed to the long history of zoomorphic interlacement.

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BIBLIOGRAPHY

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Arnold, B. Concise History of Irish Art NY 1969

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Chatzidakis, M. Byzantine and Early Medieval Painting London 1965

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Frankfort, H. The Art & Architecture of the Ancient Orient Penguin, 1969

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Janson, H. History of Art  NY, 1973

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The Metropolitan Museum of Art Treasures of Early Irish Art NY 1977

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Lucas, A. Treasure of Ireland NY 1973

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Nordenfalk, C. Celtic and Anglo-Saxon Art London 1977

 

Copyright Gabriole Sinclair 1983
 

The Celtic Art Coracle Vol 1
Contents Coracle Press 1983
ISSN 0828-8321 
All Rights Reserved
10.02.01edition
coracle@thecoracle.tripod.com

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