Sunday, June 14, 2009

Medieval Image of the Day

An image from 565 bce. I love this image. Depicted here are Greek women pre-drafting most likely flax to be spun, spinning it on what appears to be a bottom whorl spindle, weaving it on a Warp Weighted Loom, and Women folding the woven cloth. Note that there are two women in each image, but particularly weaving together. Weaving on the Warp Weighted Loom is traditionally thought of as being done with two women in Nordic cultures and is born out in this image as well. (and note the shape of those loom weights - is that a regional/traditional shape?). Now it appears that the women are different women in each image. So what does this mean? Are there many women in the household? Are there many women employed / enslaved in the household? Do different women complete different tasks within a household or by tradition? Did the artist simply enjoy drawing a variety of women?

So instead of drawing too many conclusions, I leave a fair number of questions to be answered. I think that often the archaeologists leave us with to many drawn conclusions leading us to say... but it's document by Dr... that this was a religious spindle for spinning ... who knows? But we need to be able to think of the question and to subsequently ask it. So much of what we think we know has changed or been revised through different eyes reviewing it and asking similar questions.

Philosophy on a spindle... that's me. My niece is in Greece digging up history for us. I think of her everyday. Hope you are all having a great weekend!

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