Archive for June 2nd, 2006

images from old books

A lovely resource i've found via Leighton Cooke – From Old Books : here you can find scanned images, engravings and pictures from old books.

"Remains of Ruined Castles, Deserted Abbeys, Old Manor Houses, mansions and stately homes.."


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The earth shakes: the Mexica [Aztec] begins his song:

He makes the Eagles and Ocelots dance with him!
Come to see the Huexotzinca:

On the dais of the Eagle he shouts out,
Loudly cries the Mexica.

The battlefield is the place: where one toasts the divine liquor in war,
where are stained red the divine eagles,
where the tigers howl,
where all kinds of precious stones rain from ornaments,
where wave headdresses rich with fine plumes,
where princes are smashed to bits.

There is nothing like death in war,
nothing like the flowery death
so precious to Him who gives life:
far off I see it: my heart yearns for it!

And they called it Teotihulcan
because it was the place
where the lords were buried.
Thus they said:

‘When we die,
truly we die not,
because we will live, we will rise,
we will continue living, we will awaken
This will make us happy.’

Thus the dead one was directed,
when he died:

‘Awaken, already the sky is rosy,
already dawn has come,
already sing the flame-coloured guans,
the fire-coloured swallows,
already the butterflies fly.’

Thus the old ones said
that who has died has become a god,
they said: ‘He has been made a god there,
meaning ‘He has died.’

Even jade is shattered,
Even gold is crushed,
Even quetzal plume are torn . . .
One does not live forever on this earth:
We endure only for an instant!

Will flowers be carried to the Kingdom of Death:
Is it true that we are going, we are going?
Where are we going, ay, where are we going?
Will we be dead there or will we live yet?
Does one exist again?

Perhaps we will live a second time?
Thy heart knows:
Just once do we live!.
Like a quetzal plume, a fragrant flower,
friendship sparkles:
like heron plumes, it weaves itself into finery.

Our song is a bird calling out like a jingle:
how beautiful you make it sound!
Here, among flowers that enclose us,
among flowery boughs you are singing.

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Rosa Indica vulgaris -{ Les Roses vol 1 plate 14 } Pierre-Joseph Redouté

Collection of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew


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Persian Pictures

Persian Pictures by Gertrude Bell (1892) London: Ernest Benn Ltd.

her first published work : a poetic travelogue full of sensuous imagery. after finishing at Oxford, Gertrude Bell went out to Tehran in May 1892 where her uncle had a posting.

"Here in the dust and the sunshine is an epitome of the living East, and standing unnoticed in a doorway, you will admit that you have not travelled in vain. But as the procession of people files past you, you will realize what a gulf lies between you. The East looks to itself; it knows nothing of the greater world of which you are a citizen, asks nothing of you and your civilization."

persian pictures

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ah. another outlet. welcome to random thoughts and writings and please prepare to be surprised.


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