Category: Symbols

  • The symbology of the Rotunda of Saint Thomas

    The symbology of the Rotunda of Saint Thomas

    A pretty tree-lined avenue leads to the Rotunda of Saint Thomas. The ground is covered with fallen orange and brown leaves. Although the autumn advances with an atmosphere of transience, the centuries-old trees on either side of the short walkway seem not care. The graceful place gives a lot of tranquillity and inspires inner peace.…

  • The trulli of Alberobello and the mysterious pictograms

    The trulli of Alberobello and the mysterious pictograms

    Alberobello is a cute little town in Puglia. Nestled against the gentle slopes of the Murge Plateau, the village is spread over a hillside. It owes its fame to the typical conical buildings made of the local dry limestone. These are the “trulli”: buildings of ancient origin, whose mysterious construction techniques have been preserved over…

  • The Flower of Life, symbol of rebirth

    The Flower of Life, symbol of rebirth

    The name “Flower of Life” [1] indicates the representation of a six-petaled flower belonging to different periods and archaeological contexts. Similar figures have been found in various parts of the world with partially overlapping symbolic meanings: in Europa, China, Egypt, and even at the remains of civilizations of pre-Columbian America. This simple geometric form belongs…

  • The symbolism of the lion

    The symbolism of the lion

    The figure of the lion has always raised great fascination and concern in human beings because of its majesty and, at the same time, ferocity. It constitutes, from the earliest times, a metaphor of the enemy-animal to defend against in order to safeguard life. The Lion-man of Holenstein A particular evidence of this ancestral state…

  • The Labyrinth between history and mythology

    The Labyrinth between history and mythology

    The etymon of the word ‘labyrinth’ has that particular expressive force that derives from the mixture of myth and reality, legend and history. From the Greek labýrinthos (λαβύρινθος), it is possible to trace the term back to Labrys, a characteristic double-bladed axe of antiquity. This was a weapon of mythical and symbolic power, which identified…

  • The Christograms and the Monogram of Christ

    The Christograms and the Monogram of Christ

    The arrival of Christ defines a clear dividing line in history. It originated an uninterrupted succession of events that have influenced the cultural contest of Europe until now. Some examples are the birth of the Church; early Christian, Lombard and Byzantine periods; the Catholic civilization during the Middle Age; the discovering of America… Nevertheless, the…

  • The symbology of the knotted columns

    The symbology of the knotted columns

    Hearing about columns might seem like a bore. What could there be besides the structural function of this circular architectural element? Only its artistic uses come to mind, particularly the classical orders defined by Vitruvius. It is more difficult to imagine, however, the depth of symbolic meanings attached to the concept of columns. They acquired…

  • The Sator Square, an enigma that crosses history

    The Sator Square, an enigma that crosses history

    When faced with the discovery of a Latin epigraph of uncertain meaning, written in such a way as to be palindromic in every direction, there is already the perception of dealing with an enigma. A mystery that appears as much deeper as its outlines are blurred, as incomprehensible as the cultural and archaeological context to…

  • The symbolism of the Sacred Center and the Omphalos

    The symbolism of the Sacred Center and the Omphalos

    The figure of the Sacred Center is as old as human beings and, since the earliest forms of symbolic knowledge, it has expressed the place of divine encounter, the space where the transcendent manifests itself. It has a centre because it represents the principle from which all things were generated, and is sacred because it…

  • The Wheel of Fortune, Medieval symbology

    The Wheel of Fortune, Medieval symbology

    Throughout human history, the symbol of the wheel, as a signifier of the vital cycles of the cosmos and nature, has had a constant and revelatory presence. The idea of a continuous return, of a cyclical time that regenerates everything, seems entrenched in the beliefs of a metaphysical order from the earliest times. Some examples…

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