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Re: Old World maize


This evidence sure seems quite curious. 

I was thinking that it is also quite possible that the carvings of maize
in this chapel were simply carvings of one of the crops that were known at
the time. It may have been an archaic variety of maize, also known as
"Turkish corn" in Europe in that period. 

The legends about Sir Henry's voyages may or may not be true. They don't
have to be true in order to explain the carvings. The legends may well
have been constructed subsequently to explain the carvings? 

Just speculating...



william r smith (wrsmith@unm.edu) wrote:

: We drove south of Edinburgh to the tiny village of Penicuik and the Rosyln
: Chapel.  The chapel was built in the early 1400's by Sir Henry Sullivan, who
: is buried there.  He was a Knights Templar and the chapel has many mason
: marks and stone carvings indicating ties to the Knights and to the Freemasons.
: For the small price of admission you are loaned a 30 page, typewritten guide
: to the chapel for a self conducted tour.  Each guide is in one of six or
: seven languages, and you wander around the small chapel looking at the
: carvings and features mentioned in the guide.  


: The
: chapel was completed before 1447 when Sir Henry died and the stone
: carvers decorated the arches with many varieties of flowers and vegetable,
: including, according to some, maize and an American cactus.


: The corn is more interesting.  A single row of kernels is exposed between
: two leaves, the tops of which are turned down.  Another single row is
: exposed along the other edge of the leaves and the whole motif of leaves,
: then row of beady-looking things, then leaves is repeated so that it wraps
: around the stone.  Another bunch of leaves and kernels is stacked on top,
: and the pattern of "corn ears" repeated along the entire length of the arch.

Yuri Kuchinsky   | "Where there is the Tree of Knowledge, there
     -=-         | is always Paradise: so say the most ancient 
 in Toronto      | and the most modern serpents."  F. Nietzsche
 ----- my webpage is for now at: http://www.io.org/~yuku -----