Thursday, August 20, 2009

Thought Provoking, For Sure

O Edel Herz Bedenk Dein End (O noble heart, consider your end)

That's what the initials in this motif stand for - OEHBDDE. Possibly originating from a hymn, the couplet is: O edel Herz Bedenk Dein End, Wer weist wie nah der Lauf vollend (O noble heart, consider your end, who knows how soon the course is run). The O starts in the lower left corner and then the other letters follow around clockwise.

This motif is one of the religious motifs found on Pennsylvania German show towels and features a heart in the center, a crown above, and branches with flowers extending from the heart. Surrounding the motif are the initials standing for the first line in the couplet.

I was fortunate recently to add a show towel to my collection that has this motif on it. I've always been fascinated by it and the individual interpretations of the motif. There are lots of variations as each stitcher tried to personalize her version - solid or open hearts, different flowers, lengths of the extending branches from the heart, and different crowns. This motif, besides being thought provoking for the stitcher, would no doubt hold the viewer of the towel in thought for a moment as they looked at the motif and understood the meaning of it's abbreviation. Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . O Noble Heart.


woolwoman said...

This motif from your new show towel is very interesting - thanks for including this info - I had never heard it and found it to be as you said "thought provoking" Do we see a new sampler in the future ?? Oh Noble Heart???? thanks Mel

Jackie said...

I found your blog from my friend Melody's blog. I love your stitching and the rug below is gorgeous. I really love the red in it!