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v1.11 preface
v1.11 cover
v1.11 contents
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The Celtic Art Coracle volume 1 issue 11
Language of Ornament, continued
All the more wonder, then why it is that when these symbols occur, say, engraved on a stone, we call them symbols of inscrutable religious import, but if we recognize them as pattern, it may be dismissed as "mere" decoration.

Surely if a symbolic element is repeated in an orderly fashion, forming a whole, its intelligible import is increased enormously, as a symphony is greater than the sum of its parts.

The pattern is like a symphony elaborated from a single keynote. The single motif is like a note on a scale. We tend to isolate the single motif as significant, and repetition of a motif  as  "mere decoration".

Again, we attribute to representations of creatures, or to hieroglyphs or ideograms, the status of symbolism or intelligibility, but not to pure geometry - an ornament such as triangle, chevron, or rectangle.

Yet, to the metaphysical mind, that which explores the interaction of an invisible, immutable order of reality upon human consciousness, such symbols are all the more significant precisely because they give rise to no mundane or accidental associations; rather, they are exactly suited to convey indefinable first principles with which the primitive or metaphysically-inclined mind is primarily concerned.

In approaching a traditional art form, such as Celtic art, which is based on the fundamental form language of primitive ornament, we should look closely at the primitive patterns themselves.

 

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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