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Hare and Tabor T Shirts
Lovely T Shirts in a variety of designs celebrating archaeology and ancient sites. Silk screen printed on 100% cotton, although a few may contain a couple of percent of polyester. Sizes range from small (S) through to extra extra large (XXL) for all designs, although they tend to size slightly bigger than you might expect. They are supplied by Gildan and made for the North American market. You can check the exact sizing on the chart at the bottom of this page before you order.
Lithics T Shirt
The fine woodcut illustrations used here are from The Ancient Stone Implements, Weapons and Ornaments, of Great Britain, compiled by John Evans and published in 1871.
Lithics T Shirt Purple print on Light Grey shirt
Lithics T Shirt Black print on Indigo Blue shirt
The flint hand axe perhaps represents the first design classic. It is a functional tool of exquisite beauty which seems to possess an intrinsic, archetypal sacred geometry. As Lorblanchet and Ban suggested in their book The First Artists: 'the shaping of a volume in stone foreshadowing all later sculptures'. You can view flint tools an artefacts in many museums, invluding the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford.
Stonehenge Vintage T Shirt
The design is based on an illustration by Heywood Sumner for an official guide published in 1916. I have used his plan view of the monument as envisaged in its' original state, as this has a pleasing symmetry. Stonehenge embodies both deep history and tradition, along with counter cultural radicalism.
Stonehenge T Shirt, White print on Green
Stonehenge T Shirt, White print on Brown
What seems certain is that it was used to mark certain key seasonal points during the year, particularly the mid summer sunrise . It suggests a complex knowledge of astronomy and geometry, as well as the ability to organise a large workforce and execute the complex engineering and building processes required.
The documenters of Stonehenge have included William Blake, Turner, Constable, Wordsworth, Thomas Hardy, Paul Nash, Henry Moore and John Piper. It is the ultimate piece of land art and embodies what Stukely termed the "struggle between art and nature." It's modern apotheosis was perhaps Jeremy Deller's inflatable bouncy castle Stonehenge. He named it "Sacriledge" but it was great fun and very popular, such is the public affection for the monument.
Pictish Boar T Shirt
The wild boar, which goes by the cuddly scientific Latin name of Sus scrofa, was a native species to Britain and much of Europe. It was revered for its' ferocity, courage and fertility and features widely in northern European mythology, and appears as a symbol on archeological finds such as the Sutton Hoo helmet (on the ends of the eyebrows!).
Pictish Boar T Shirt Brown design on khaki shirt
Pictish Boar T Shirt Brown design on Mid Blue shirt
The Norse god Freyr and his sister both rode wild boars, and three Roman legions adopted the wild boar as their emblem. Boewulf reports of the Anglo Saxons carrying a banner with a boars head design, and speaks of the animals decorative appearance on helmets
The image used on the T shirt is based on a Pictish carving from the 7th century found on a stone in Invernesshire. There is a particular concentration of such monuments along the east coast of Scotland completed between the 6th and 9th centuries. The carvings are often expressed through a distictive symobolism.
Cerne Giant T Shirt
In days gone by giants walked the land and became a rich source of myth and legand. Indeed the very origins of mythical Albion itself lie in tales of the son of Neptune defeating the Celts and naming the land after himself. Albion himself was subsequently vanquished by Hercules, and he is the giant that many think is depicted here.
Cerne Giant T Shirt, White design on green shirt
Cerne Giant T Shirt, White design on pink shirt
The chalk figures continue to haunt the landscape as a reminder of their presence and, as Peter Knight Observed, "The Giant reverberates of times long gone when tales of heroic deeds were commonplace, when cultural and racial identity was defined by one's myths." We will all remember,of course, the ominous words "Fi-fi-fo-fum, I smell the blood of an Englishman" from the Jack and the Beanstalk fairy tale which continues the tradition.
Phallicism and fertility are also universal themes of worship of great antiquity, and in no way unique to the Cerne Abbas hill figure. Indeed, phallic symbolism from 17,000 years ago can be found in the iconic paintings in the caves of Lascaux in France . There was a strong association between human virility and the bounteous gifts of nature, which was celebratory rather than profane.
It was following the emergence of modern Christianity that sex came to be viewed as sinful, a process that reached its' apotheosis in the Victorian era when the Cerne Abbas figure found himself emasculated for over 100 years. The phallus now became associated with deviance and occultism, and the last thing the prudish Victorians wanted was a 36 foot reminder that could be seen for miles carved into a Dorset hillside. So by 1842 he had lost his genitals bu gained a belly button. His manhood was eventually fully restored in the 1920s.
Uffington White Horse T Shirt
The White Horse of Uffington is considered to be the oldest chalk hill figure in England, dating back to 1000 BC in the Late Bronze Age. It lies just off the The Ridgeway, a route of great antiquity with many ancient sites located along its length.
White Horse T Shirt, White on khaki green
White Horse T Shirt, White print on Navy blue
The economy and elegance of the chalk lines representing what most consider to be a horse is breathtaking. It is, at 273 feet long, one of the first major pieces of land art to grace the landscape and continues to enchant to this day.
Similar images have been found depicted on coins dating from the same period, and one suggestion is that it represents the horse goddess Epona, worshipped throughout the Celtic world. Readers of my generation will also know the hill figure from the cover of XTC's album English Settlement. The band members were from Swindon, eight miles to the east.
Long Man of Wilmington T Shirt
Situated on Windover Hill in East Sussex, this human figure is 232 feet high and has been the subject of much debate surrounding his origins and antiquity. The figure itself is surrounded by other ancient sites, further up the hill are a series of burial mounds, and in a nearby churchyard is an yew tree thought to be several thousand years old.
Long Man T Shirt, White design on green shirt
Long Man T Shirt, White design on dark brown shirt
The outline of the body, as told in a number of legends, is said to be that of a fallen giant, who carries staves (or spears) in each hand. He has been known in the past as the Green man. The earliest representation of the figure is from 1710 and investigations suggest that the outline may have changed over the years, and that originally he was carrying a scythe and a rake, and that he may have worn a helmet. The present figure has a simple elegance that still casts a spell over the surrounding landscape.
Longship T Shirt
The image used for this design is a piece of rock art (petroglyph) dating from the Nordic Bronze Age (1700-500 BC) found in the Tanum area of western Sweden. The location of the site is part of the former coastline of a fjord, hence the frequency of maritime images on over 600 panels to be found there.
Longship T Shirt, Blue print on Black
The carvings in the granite were most likely created with stone tools, and are regarded as having religious and cosmological significance. The proximity often of burial sites and other archaeological remains support this interpretation. This was a long time before the emergence of the Vikings, but the image already contains elements commonly associated with their ships such as the curved prow and elaborate decorative elements. There were, however, some important differences. All of the boats depicted were powered by rowing and did not have sails.
Other mysterious elements remain to be definitively decoded. Who or what is the strange figure with the pincer hand and holding the strange object overhead? What is the significance of the wolf like creature above the boat. We will probably never know the answer to some of these questions, which is surely part of the images beguiling attraction?
We also have Megalithic Portal standard and long sleeved T Shirts available.
This page last edited on Thursday, 22-Oct-2020 11:18:46 BST