Interlocked Fingers Gesture as Interpreted by Chirologia in French Painting of the Seventeenth–eighteenth Centuries Cover Image
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Жестът на скръстените пръсти според хирологията във френската живопис през ХVІІ–ХVІІІ век
Interlocked Fingers Gesture as Interpreted by Chirologia in French Painting of the Seventeenth–eighteenth Centuries

Author(s): Temenuzhka Dimova
Subject(s): Christian Theology and Religion, History, Fine Arts / Performing Arts, Cultural history, History of Church(es), Visual Arts, Modern Age, Theology and Religion, 17th Century, 18th Century, Biblical studies
Published by: Институт за изследване на изкуствата, Българска академия на науките

Summary/Abstract: Hands language as a means of expression in rhetoric and fine arts, the rules of which were presented mainly by the Roman authors Cicero and Quintilian, continued to stir interest over the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and strongly influenced artists and their iconographic reference points. English physician and rhetorician John Bulwer (1606–1656) devoted a few of his significant works to studying of the human gesture system, offering over 120 chirograms (types) of particular meanings. Spanish mathematician Juan Caramuel (1606–1682) studied the rhetorical wealth of chirologia, defining it as a major means of human communication. Hand gestures with fingers locked together is traditionally deemed to be a Christian prayer gesture, where palms are pressed together with fingers straight pointing up. In fact, the locked together fingers, known as early as the Antiquity, unlike the prayer gesture that emerged as late as the late medieval period, designated something else: a moment of deep sadness and suffering reflecting the strong tension of the mind. French artist Georges de La Tour uses this gesture as a basis for reflection on the vanity of worldly goods. Thus the position of the hands played the role of both a plastic device and an iconographic symbol.

  • Issue Year: 2014
  • Issue No: 9
  • Page Range: 377-387
  • Page Count: 11
  • Language: Bulgarian