Tuesday, April 27, 2021

Horses from Old Poland - real or imaginary

 Salvete Omnes,

a little post on some horse imagery and one court painter that never made it to his royal patron.

Flemish painter, the scion of the artist family, Ferdinand van Kessel, active in Breda (the same town made famous by Diego de Velasquez painting), at some moment in his artist life became a long-distance court painter for our Royal Majesty king Jan III [Sobieski].
Among works van Kessel painted for king Jan III were allegorical panels showing the four continents, and I would like to bring your attention to the panel dedicated to Europe (panels are held in Vienna, Austria, in the Kunsthistorisches  museum).

in this panel there are two smaller ones that contain horse and these panels purportedly show the Polish royal city of Krakow and English city of London respectively.
the panel with Krakow

in this panel there are two horses - perhaps Old Polish horses. One horse is a 'tarant' and 'dropiaty'- spotted horses of the leopard complex coat type.

the other animals are also  very interesting - a bear, a moose (European elk), possibly an auroch, lynx etc.

and the London panel



Thursday, April 15, 2021

The Arrival of the Horse in Ancient Egypt

 Salvete Omnes,


how are you this Spring - cold as hell in these woods of  the northern hemisphere. 

I am always interested in the early horse  history  - so a short entry today with links to articles - 


so, first a British researcher Miriam Bibby made available her article on the arrival of the horse in the ancient Egypt during the Bronze Age. Succinct and short, 6 pages, provides the insight and bibliography - so canter away.

a brief but interesting article on the state of  the Hyksos research by prof. Thomas Schneider. 

and another article, this time  by a Romanian scholar prof. Renata Tatomir - The presence of horse in ancient Egypt and the problem of veracity of the horseshoe magic in the ancient Egyptian folklore and mythology.


Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Saint Longinus in art

 Salvete Omnes,


still in the Easter Catholic and Orthodox mode - let us visit the imagery showing Saint Longinus, who with his spear was the executioner of Christ, then a convert & missionary, and eventually a martyr. Golden Legend can be read here.

so, some of the images taken from Wiki Commons -in these works of sacred Medieval art Saint Longinus is the warrior/knight/soldier with the spear piercing or about to pierce Christ's side thus killing Him.



Sunday, April 4, 2021

Happy Easter

 Salvete Omnes,

Easter Sunday - celebrating our most holy and important feast day of the year,  amid the second year of the Covid-19 political medicine reality.

Christ by Samostrzelnik, see more below, nota bene Ogonczyk coat of arms on the shield next to the fully armored knight

one of my favorite saints - saint Martin - Polish noblemen were still very international(Europe-wide style) in their dress, weapons and horse tack


Happy Easter with this crucifixion scene painted by Stanislaw Samostrzelnik, this beautiful illumination comes from a Polish late medieval missal made for bishop Erazm Ciolek, Sulima Coat of Arms (born of a burgher parents, he became a royal secretary and was able to claim the Sulima clan membership and thus became in fact and in law a nobleman ) - see the Sulima coat of arms at the bottom of the page.
This diplomat and man of Church was among the circle of  favorites of  His Royal Majesty Aleksander I (son of Kazimierz Jagielonczyk and grandshon of Wladyslaw Jagiello).

also you can peruse bishop Erazm Ciolek Roman Pontifical at the Polona (Polish National Library site).
I selected several illumination from there showing the Polish king and his armored knights and heraldry


Friday, April 2, 2021

Good Friday & Cranach the Elder

 Salvete Omnes,

in the tradition of this blog another Good Friday posting,


 so as you can see this time our favorite artist of this Good Friday before the Easter Sunday (and Pisanki Saturday etc) is one famous Germanic Maler [painter], printmaker and bookmaker  Lucas Cranach the Elder.

horse detail

and this  woodcut piece -


and Saint Goerge vanquishing the evil