Wednesday, August 26, 2015


So, while we're on the subject of symbolic art, this is perhaps Ivaan's most famous tryzub.  The tryzub, or trident, is the national symbol of Ukraine.  The three points represent the Holy Trinity, so I guess it's more accurate to say the tryzub is the national symbol of Christian Ukraine.

I don't actually know if Ivaan made this for anyone before he made it for a young man named Kyrylo, but Kyrylo is the one with whom this tryzub has always been associated, and it is in honour of that Kyrylo that this tryzub is named.  Like most Stars of David, as mentioned  in my previous post,  most tryzubs look as though they had been stamped out of sheet metal.  That's because they generally had.  Again, a tryzub can look quite beautiful when rendered on paper or on textile but in metal it calls out to be made three dimensional.

The Kyrylo tryzub looks like bread dough rising, a very apt detail, because Ukrainians take their bread seriously.  It is also highly stylized, so many people, even Ukrainians, have to look at it more than once to realize what it is. I have heard - and I don't know whether it's true - that the word воля (Volya) can be seen in the tryzub.  It means liberty.

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