blog description

Old women talk about old things: history, myth, magic and their
checkered pasts, about what changes and what does not.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My favorite Autumn and Crone images

In no particular order . . . my favorite Autumn and/or Crone images for the season.
(With apologies for being so late with my posting. Been swamped with a new job!)

Have loved these Welsh ladies from the first time I spotted them on a postcard and shared them with my "goilfriends." Did some reading into the history of their hats (wonder if they ever had a clue they looked like witches in them?!) and learned that they first appeared in the 1830s and were likely adapted from men's hats of the period.

I stumbled across this image when I started researching "Crones" in art. At the same time I found this, I read that grandmothers were usually the designated storytellers. This painting by the French artist Louis-Leopold Boilly is entitled "and the Ogre ate him up!" (early 19th c.)
Love the expressions on the faces of the children!

John Everett Millais' "Autumn Leaves" (1856).

Fall, leaves, fall

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me
Fluttering from the autumn tree.
I shall smile when wreaths of snow
Blossom where the rose should grow;
I shall sing when night’s decay
Ushers in a drearier day.

Source: Poets of the English Language (Viking Press, 1950)


1 comment:

  1. Wonderful pics, you Art Historian. I was thinking about the politics of Crone-hood this morning. The sight of women in men's hats must have scared the...whatever out of the old boys. Women with power or the trappings of power - Shakespeare's bearded sisters, Hawthorne's sulf-sufficient puritanesses with private lives, the long-lived herbalists who outlived their husbands' "protection" - these were threatening and dangerous in a patriarchy built on bullying bombast. Today women of power are bitches, which rhymes with witches, eh? Don't even get me started in Eve, the bearer of all humanity.
    The ladies at the Welsh Tea Party with Hats look happily mischeivous, and I would certainly don a hat and drink their potion if Time allowed.
    Instead I will post two poems inspired by Millais' painting. Thank you for inspiring a bit of literary history, Sister.