Daily Picture 19-Nov-09: Peacock Motif Neo-Romanian Style Window

Peacock motif Neo-Romanian style window, late 1920s house in Eroilor area, Bucharest (©Valentin Mandache)

The medieval peacock decorative motif, inspired from biblical stories, was used with predilection in both early medieval Byzantine and western Romanesque ecclesiastical architecture. The Eastern Christian lands of the Balkans that come under the rule of the Ottoman empire continued to use this type of decoration until modern times. That was more evident in the architecture of church and monastery assemblies from the area of the former principalities of Wallachia and Moldova, the core of modern Romania, which benefited from a higher degree of freedom and religious expression derived from their status as Ottoman protectorates at the frontier of the Sultan’s Caliphate with the enemy empires of Austria and Russia. The modern Neo-Romanian architectural style has borrowed the peacock motif in its decoration register, embodied in exquisitely beautiful houses built especially in the time interval between the end of the Great War and early 1930s. The window in the photograph above is just one such example, where the pair of peacocks on the pediment are presented feeding from a grape among grape leaves and vines, signifying the biblical Garden of Eden, and its modern correspondent in the abundance of that plant and wine industry in modern Romania. That message of plenty and luxuriant vegetation is also wonderfully emphasized in this photograph by the tree branches from the rich garden surrounding this Neo-Romanian style house.

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I endeavor through this daily image series to inspire appreciation of the historic houses of Romania, a virtually undiscovered, but fascinating chapter of European architectural heritage.

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If you plan acquiring a historic property in Romania or start a renovation project, I would be delighted to advice you in locating the property, specialist research, planning permissions, restoration project management, etc. To discuss your particular plan please see my contact details in the Contact page of this weblog.