Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Remembering Ribbons: Victorian Times

As part of our "Remembering Ribbons" series, we are showcasing the ways in which they were used during the Victorian Era. Although one might consider them a mere fashion accessory, we shall soon see that there is important symbolism behind them as well.

The Shop Girl (The Vendor of Ribbons) by James Tissot

The Victorian Era would be the last to patronize ribbons to such a large degree. Their decline would soon be known in the following centuries as feminists began to streamline clothing, eventually making the wardrobe more masculine and fitting for the work force (and therefore removing women from the home).

The Blue Ribbon by Alfred Stevens

Ribbons were sewn onto dresses, attached to hats and woven through hair. Scarcely a Victorian story could be written without addressing how the ribbon was worn by the female characters. In many a novel, it's extravagant or simple use hinted to the reader about the nature (or financial position) of its wearer...
"But the bonnet was made of solid straw, and its only trimming was a plain white ribbon put over the crown, and forming the strings."

~ Elizabeth Gaskell, Wives and Daughters

"Her dress was very plain: a close straw bonnet of the best material and shape, trimmed with white ribbon; a dark silk gown, without any trimming or flounce; a large Indian shawl, which hung about her in long heavy folds, and which she wore as an empress wears her drapery."

~ Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South

The Yellow Ribbon by Albert Tayler, 1889

The simplest of clothing became special with the addition of a ribbon. However, they were not limited to adornment of only skirts, blouses and  hair.

1928 Cameo Ribbon Necklace

Ribbons were also worn as a necklace. Although Queen Elizabeth and Catherine the Great had a vast collection of these, it was Queen Victoria who revived this style by wearing black velvet ribbons to display her lovely cameos. They were tied closely around the neck and referred to as "chokers".


Ribbons were also used to embellish letters (authentic example shown above) and to keep them bundled together for a sweet storage. Perhaps the ideas for modern day scrap-booking come from the ingenuity of our Victorian ancestors who loved to add beauty to ordinary things. 

Red Ribbon Heart Lariat Charm Necklace

During this time period, the red ribbon was used as a symbol of temperance (more specifically, it meant for people to completely abstain from all intoxicating beverages and to solidify this promise by "taking the pledge") ...

"The Red Ribbon is all the go;
It's the temperance sign, you know;
It is seen wherever you go,
On men who dare do right.

Three cheers for all red ribbon men,
And also those that is their friend;
God will be with you to the end,
He's ever on the right."

~ Excerpts from the poem, "The Red Ribbon" by Julia A Moore

File:Wctu logo.png
Old Logo of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union, Est. 1873

In our modern day society, the red ribbon is no longer associated with complete abstinence of alcohol but is used as a symbol to be "drug free" and warn "against drunk driving" (which is taught in the public school system during their "Red Ribbon Week"). May our lovely readers keep all three meanings close to their hearts in honor of Proverbs 20:1! Perhaps a red ribbon can still remind one of this promise?

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Rose Ribbon Embroidery Pendant Kit

Lastly, to encourage a spirit of femininity and give a nod to Victorian Era ribbons...  A beautiful way to blend the past with the present can be found in these rose-ribbon embroidery pendant kits. You can learn a new skill (rose ribbon embroidery) while creating these antique style necklaces which would also make lovely gifts. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Who Was Pharaoh's Daughter? ~ Theory #2

"And the daughter of Pharaoh came down to wash herself at the river; and her maidens walked along by the river's side; and when she saw the ark among the flags, she sent her maid to fetch it. 
And when she had opened it, she saw the child: and, behold, the babe wept. And she had compassion on him, and said, This is one of the Hebrews' children. 
Then said his sister to Pharaoh's daughter, Shall I go and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee? 
And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, Go. And the maid went and called the child's mother.
And Pharaoh's daughter said unto her, Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages. And the women took the child, and nursed it. 
And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses: and she said, Because I drew him out of the water." 
~ Exodus 2:5-10

Have you ever wondered which historical princess in Egypt was the "daughter of Pharaoh" who rescued the Hebrew child from the river? There have been some valid speculations which are very interesting to study. Here you will find the first theory that we discussed utilizing the "Revised Egyptian Chronology". Today, we will focus on another thought based on the "Traditional Egyptian Chronology". This group of archaeologists present evidence that it may have been the Queen Hatshepsut of the 18th Dynasty. Was she responsible for adopting the baby Moses?

Fragmentary statue of Hatshepsut, quartz diorite,
c. 1498–1483 BC Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Some potential clues:
  • She had no sons of her own and it would have been important for her to secure an heir to her throne. A baby floating in a basket in the Nile would have seemed like a gift from the gods.  (She did have a step son whom she co-reigned with. However, he was second fiddle to the throne as she declared herself the Pharaoh and often wore a false beard which further depicted her "manly status" as king.) 
Large granite sphinx bearing the likeness of the pharaoh Hatshepsut, depicted with the traditional false beard, a symbol of her pharaonic power—Metropolitan Museum of Art.

  • According to "Traditional Egyptian Chronology" Timeline,
"Hatshepsut was the sole child who survived past infancy of the Queen consort, Ahmose, and her Pharaoh father, Thutmosis I. Queen Ahmose gave Thutmosis I four children, three of whom died in their youth (LoMusio 1989:85). Thus, Hatshepsut was the only woman in 1526 BC who could have had the title “Pharaoh’s daughter,” the designation given in Exodus to the person who saved Moses and later adopted him." ~ D. Hansen (Web Source)
Stone Statue of Hatshepsut

  • At some point in her reign, there was a revolt against her. Her step-son, Thutmosis III, finally took over. Some speculate that he saw the opportunity to remove Moses from the picture once the death of the Egyptian became known.  This would give him the complete rule (which he was entitled to) and cause Moses to flee to Midian to escape the wrath of Pharoah who would consider him a threat to the throne (Hebrews 11:24). The revolution took place at the same time the traditional dates would have assumed Moses to be on the run, 1483 BCE (web source).
Hatshepsut's Temple
  • We can see in history that Thutmosis III (her step-son) spent some time in covering up the existence of Hatshepsut after her reign (many of her monuments, etc., were defaced and destroyed). Some archaeologists assume it is because she adopted "Moses" and trained him to be the next Pharaoh which clearly would have upset Thutmosis III, who was the rightful heir. According to Tyldesley, J:
"Hatshepsut died ca. 1483 BC and Thutmosis III reigned alone for another 33 years. Whether Hatshepsut died a natural death, or was murdered, is disputed by Egyptologists. What is known is that many of Hatshepsut’s monuments and statues were defaced or destroyed after her departure. Her name was erased from cartouches across the land and replaced with the names of her father or husband/half-brother (LoMusio 1989:87). This would indicate that Thutmosis III acquiesced to removing her memory, understandable if he had had to play a secondary role to her during the first 22 years of his reign. Davis agrees with this interpretation and writes that,
"the vengeance sought upon Moses was not due only to Moses’ murder of an Egyptian official, but also to his possible association with Hatshepsut (1986:42)."' (Web Source)

  • A final clue was that the 18th Dynasty prided themselves in building and there are pictures during their reign of foreign slaves making bricks which would align with Hebrew captivity according to the "Traditional Egyptian Chronology" (Web Source 1 and 2.

Although there is interesting information linking Hatshepsut as "Pharaoh's Daughter", the scholars who adopt the "Revised Egyptian Chronology" (shared in the first theory)  give reasons for her to be Queen of Sheba (this will be shared in the future). Either way, these are exciting ideas to ponder! Once again, we must realize that the Bible is true history and features real people from the past. Present these suggestions to your children, sisters and friends in order to solidify the Scriptures. Study the different theories...

"The heart of the discerning acquires knowledge, 
for the ears of the wise seek it out."

~ Proverbs 18:15

I encourage you to bring the Bible to life by breathing historical information into these events! There are so many fairy tales in this world, we don't want the Holy Word to be mistaken for one...

Information for this post was gleaned from ~ 

The Finding of Moses by Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema

The first theory is shared here...

Which one convicts you? Or do you have other ideas?

(I personally agree with the Revised Chronology shared in theory one.)

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The "Art" of Crochet

The Crochet Lesson by Mary Cassatt

"And Diana and I had a lovely afternoon. Diana showed me a new fancy crochet stitch her aunt over at Carmody taught her. Not a soul in Avonlea knows it but us, and we pledged a solemn vow never to reveal it to anyone else. Diana gave me a beautiful card with a wreath of roses on it and a verse…"

~ Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

The Crochet Lesson by Edward Thompson Davis

"I want you to teach me how to crochet that lace I saw you making the other day..."

~ Elsie's Kith and Kin by Martha Finley

Young Girl Crocheting by Michael Peter Ancher

"There was Miss Pole, who was becoming as much absorbed in crochet as she had been once in knitting, and the burden of whose letter was something like, "But don't you forget the white worsted at Flint's" of the old song; for at the end of every sentence of news came a fresh direction as to some crochet commission which I was to execute for her."

~ Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell

Girl Crocheting by Edmund C. Tarbell

"... good-tempered and possessing the happy art of pleasing without effort. Her little airs and graces were much admired, so were her accomplishments, for besides her drawing, she could play twelve tunes, crochet, and read French without mispronouncing more than two-thirds of the words..."

 ~ Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Crochet Lesson by Federico Zandomeneghi

"We have heard that the greatest lady in the land deigned thus to serve her soldiers. We have been told of a cravat worked in crochet by a queen's fingers which fell to the share of a gallant young officer in the trenches—the same brave lad who had carried, unscathed, the colours of his regiment…"

Lydia Sitting on the Porch Crocheting by Mary Cassatt

"She seeketh wool, and flax,

and worketh willingly with her hands."

~ Proverbs 31:13

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