Friday, August 3, 2012

Historical Inspiration - Bridal Knot Jewelry

I find many inspirations for my creations from historical jewelry. Here is a little bit of the story behind my collection of Tie The Knot jewelry.

Miscellanea Etcetera Tie the Knot Collection - Bracelet available here, Earrings here, and Necklace here

The knot a a symbol for marriage has been around for a very long time. There are many examples of ancient Greek jewelry with examples of square knots (reef knots if you are a sailor), also historically known as Hercules knots.

Hercules knots (most likely named for the strength of the knot) were originally used by the ancient Greeks in medical applications; tying bandages with this knot was thought to aid in healing. But Hercules knots also became popular as a wedding symbol. Belts worn by brides were tied in this knot (a strong knot, hard to untie - representing the chastity of the bride-to-be), to be untied by the groom after the wedding - and eventually the knot itself became a symbol of marriage and fertility that has persisted through history to present day in the common expression referring to marriage as "tying the knot."

Symbolic knots can be found in jewelry from ancient Greece and ancient Rome as well as in medieval jewelry. Here are a few examples that can be found in museum collections:

Ancient Greek - From the British Museum - Gold Diadem with Herakles Knot

Ancient Greek - from the Metropolitan Museum of Art - Gold armband with Herakles knot

Ancient Roman - From the British Museum - Necklace of gold links in the form of Hercules' knot

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