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Subscribe to this list via RSS Blog posts tagged in stang
Stang-Smith: An Interview with Tveir Hrafnar's Aidan Wachter

The stang as icon has been around the Old Craft neck of the woods for decades (if not centuries) now, but the first (to the best of my knowledge, at any rate) to translate it into jewelry is silversmith Aidan Wachter of Tennessee. As even the most cursory glance at his on-line atelier Tveir Hrafnar (that's “Two Ravens,” for those of you who didn't happen to grow up speaking Old Norse) shows, his jewelry and sigils are characterized by bold, minimalist design and precision detailing.

Aidan, how did you come to silver-smithing?

I lucked into meeting and becoming good friends with symbolic jeweler Mark Defrates when I moved to New Orleans in the early 90’s. At one point he needed help in his shop and that is where I first learned the craft.

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Recent Comments - Show all comments
  • Steven Posch
    Steven Posch says #
    Thanks, Aidan. I've made the correction above as well. And just to add: if you think the picture above is beautiful, folks, just
  • Aidan
    Aidan says #
    Hi, this is Aidan Wachter- a friend just pointed out that the link above is broken. The address is: www.tveirhrafnar.com Thank yo

Posted by on in Culture Blogs
Of Arrows and Garlands

One of the signature symbols of the modern Old Craft movement is the crossed arrows and garland. It is a striking and evocative image which I find, as I peruse the literature, to have occasioned much discussion but little articulation. The symbol, however, has much to tell, to those who care to ask.

These days the garlanded arrow-cross receives attention mostly as an adornment for the stang, the standing forked pole that is the unembodied image of the Horned. Most discussion seems to center around the composition of the garland (what vegetation, at what season) and its presence or absence. Rarely do I find discussion of meaning.*

In its first appearance on the public stage, though, the symbol—though associated with the stang—is freestanding. I myself first saw it in a photograph in Justine Glass' 1973 book Witchcraft, the Sixth Sense—and You. There a rather sloppily-made mixed garland of leaves, flowers, and feathers is pierced by two diagonally-crossed arrows, one with black fletching and one with white. They would seem to be mounted on a wall above what is described as a “keppen rod.” This is clearly what would later be called a “stang,” in this case not a hayfork but a pole with a curved metal end-prong, probably used for removing pots from an oven.

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Posted by on in Culture Blogs
The Witchiest Little Shrine at PSG

Midsummer's 2009, Pagan Spirit Gathering: Camp Zoe, Missouri. A bunch of us Old Style folks are camped at a fork in the road down by Rock Creek. Between our camp and the road are a couple of tall old lodge-pole cedars.

My friend Sirius sets up his stang between the two cedars. In Old Craft lore, the stang is Old Hornie's preeminent symbol. It can take a number of forms, but the simplest is an old-style two-tined wooden hay fork.

Story goes that back in the day when it wasn't safe to keep Things around, when time for Doing came and the Old Buck not to be there in His Own Self (so to say), He'd be stood-for by a hayfork or pitchfork set upright in the ground: the Upright Man, as they called him. Light a candle between those horns, and here's a stand-in for the Old Un Himself, and next morning you hang him back up on wall of barn and none to be any the wiser.

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