Bibliotherapy

A Blessing by the 3 Graces

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The 3 Graces in Sandro Botticelli’s ‘Primavera’

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‘…Besides, three splendid girls of equal beauty in face and bearing, clasping each other’s hands and wearing garlands of roses, approached the maiden. One of them kissed Philology on the forehead on the smooth skin between the eyebrows, the second embraced her face, the third her waist; the first that ‘she might breathe joy and honor into her eyes’, the second laid grace upon her tongue, and the third gave her gentleness of spirit. They were called the Graces and they bestowed charm on whatever they touched. After they have filled the maiden with light, they mingled with the muses and broke into the rhythmic movements and steps of the wedding dance. Then they all together, with a great booming of tambours and ringing of cymbals, so much that the sound of the Muses was to some extent drowned by the booming sound of the tambours. To this accompaniment a palanquin was brought in, bedecked with stars, to which they sang their loud songs with the ritual of the mysteries, as was the custom when a goddess-bride was entering the bond of celestial matrimony’.

Pico della Mirandola’s medal, verso
From Martianus Capella’s ‘Marriage of Philology and Mercury’, Hall and Burge 1977 English edition, Columbia University Press. New York. Chapter 2, ‘The Marriage’. Page 46. More about Martianus Capella: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Martianus_Capella

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