Image text integration

Thursday, April 13, 2006

State official seal: text and image for Virginia, USA

Just looking at an image of state seal few people realize how many textual knowledge is compressed there, especially if language of text is Latin, and figures represent third rate ancient goddesses, important for founders.

“The committee set forth the official design in use today, which is essentially the design adopted by the Virginia's Constitutional Convention of 1776.

The obverse side of the great seal depicts the Roman goddess Virtus representing the spirit of the Commonwealth. She is dressed as an Amazon, a sheathed sword in one hand, and a spear in the other, and one foot on the form of Tyranny, who is pictured with a broken chain in his left hand, a scourge in his right, and his fallen crown nearby, implying struggle that has ended in complete victory. Virginia’s motto, Sic Semper Tyrannis (Latin for "Thus Always to Tyrants"), appears at the bottom.

“On the reverse side of the seal are the three Roman goddesses, Libertas (Liberty) in the center holding a wand and pileus in her right hand, Aerternitas (Eternity) with a globe and phoenix in her right hand, and Ceres (Fruitfulness) with a cornucopia in her left hand and an ear of wheat in her right. At the top is the word Perservando (Latin for "by Persevering"). A border of Virginia creeper encircles the designs on each side.

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