Thursday, November 27

Simply enchanting!

A few years ago, a very dear professor of mine attended a conference in Cambridge, England. And there she visited the famous Fitzwilliam Museum, where she purchased a little reprint of a Flemish painting called “Courtship: Book of Hours” (C. 1500) as “special gift,” for her Persian student of Medieval Literature. (By the way, the reprint is scanned for your view and used here as an ornament to this post.) I shall never forget that winter day in her office, where she kindly offered me not only the special reprint of a medieval painting with a note inside, but with that a box of Harrods’ special cookies too!
The cookies are long gone, even their taste is forgotten, but the reprint is on the wall, right in front of my face. And every time I look at the reprint, inevitably, I see her explanation written all over it.
“Look at the image! A graceful damsel,” raved the wise medievalist, “at the window of her castle, receives a love-offering from her courtier, who is ascending on a ladder to proclaim his love! What is the offering? It is a green plant with yellow blooms, symbolizing love, companionship, prosperity and growth; indeed a meaningful offering”.

The image may be medieval, but the narrative is not of past! Simply enchanting, wouldn’t you say?!


katayoun

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