|A Tree Full Of Penises
|[Jan. 3rd, 2005|08:51 pm]
I had to share this.
amritarosa put me onto it.
This medieval mural in the Italian city of Massa Marittima shows a bunch of women standing under a tree full of penises. According to a British academic, it illustrates a passage from the Malleus Maleficarum and is the earliest representation of witches in European art.
The Reuters article gives a full explanation.
Well, my goodness gracious!
I'm amazed no graffiti or censorship has covered this over in all these centuries.
Reminds me of the Garden of Earthly Delights. Wonder if Bosch saw it?
Actually it was covered over. Probably not to censor it, but because they needed the wall for something else. It was only uncovered about four years back.
Might Bosch have seen it? I doubt it, but his work comes out of the same weird medieval dream-world.
Also, I think the penis-tree is a pretty common med/early-mod european folk story. That new-ish Medieval Folklore book charts it (I can give a better reference once I get home, and if anyone cares).
Yeah, I care. I'd love to have the reference.
Okeydokey - I'll get it for you when I'm back at my apartment (still on holiday sojourn right now)...
What a charming joke.
And the old fools took it as an authentic piece of witchcraft lore. Hah!
Haha, wow! That is quite a find 0__o
2005-01-04 03:33 am (UTC)
This made me smile.
Thanks for sharing.
Don't you just love the middle ages!