Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Figureheads on the Seine

There are many "Statues of Liberty" around Paris

There are many houseboats and pleasure craft parked along the river Seine. The "Seine" means “sacred source” or “sacred river” – how often rivers are considered a sacred source.

If the river is sacred, then it may also be rife with enemies, for there are many figureheads, traditionally mounted on ships to ward off foes and guard the vessel and its mates.

Warrior with the Louvre behind

Pirate I
Pirate II


a live figurehead


rachel said...

cute puppy! I like the statues, too:)

Rauf said...

I have seen these house boats on the Sien in a Canadian Children's film about Van Gogh, I forgot the title. Last night I watched Steve Martin's 'The Pink Panther' I was thinking of your pictures through out the movie. The film was hillarious but nothing like Peter sellers. I think Steve Martin did a pretty good job.Most of the film was shot in Paris. The City is so beautiful Ruth, no wonder your heart is in Paris.

Most of the rivers are considered sacred in India, river Ganga in particular. The holy water for the Hindus is called 'Ganga jal' simply meaning Ganga water. All civilisations flourished on the banks of rivers. All considered sacred. Water is sacred.

Clo said...

Awwww, what a cute chow chow!
And all those figureheads are just great!

I had always lived near a river. Born on the shore of the Saguenay River, I now live near the St. Lawrence river. I just can't imagine living in a place where I'm not able to go on a shore.

Mei Shile said...

I never heard about those figureheads before. This is a nice custom. We should have some to watch and protect St-Lawrence river

Ruth said...

Thanks, Rach.

Rauf, if you recall the name of the children's film about Van Gogh, please let me know! I've wondered about the new Pink Panther since I loved the old one. I really like Steve Martin, so maybe I'll like it too. Seeing Paris would be enough reason. Yes, I love the image of river as life and source, connection with the sacred.

Ruth said...

Clo, sounds like the flow of water is part of your life and psyche. So wonderful.

Mei, maybe you could start the tradition, or maybe you'll notice some now?

Ginnie said...

I laughed when I got to your "live" figurehead, Ruth. How clever and charming. I think one could make a good art book of just figureheads alone...just in Paris or all over the world. You have a nice start :)

Ruth said...

One regret is that I did not start studying photography until I returned from Paris. So much I would do differently with these photos now! But live and learn as they say. And I'll be in Paris again someday when I can apply some of the techniques I'm learning with lighting (and background placement). :)

Rauf said...

I am afraid I am wrong about the children's film Ruth, what i saw was Amsterdam I think. The Canadian french sorry french Canadian film is 'Van Gogh and me' Van Gogh et moi' (please forgive me if i am wrong. But the child goes to Paris and Arles in her dream and watched Van Gogh paint, she tells him that one day this painting will be sold for millions of dollars. He laughs at her as no one is buying his paintings even for ten francs.

Ruth said...

I will look for that film. Thanks, Rauf.