Thursday, 16 March 2017

connect the dots

Public Domain Review features a brilliant ninth century French manuscript called the Aratea that’s one of the earliest known examples of the calligram—the artful arrangement of text to form an image, whose form is part of the message. There are two parallel poems on astronomy, how to chart the stars, track the seasons and the myths behind the gods and heroes transposed, scattered in the firmament, on each page with the upper verse set in the shape of the constellation under discussion. The red dots correspond to the stars’ positions in each figure.