Fire Stones

lapides igniferi, terebolem, turrobolen, terroboli
Fire Stones /lapides igniferi, terebolem, turrobolen, terroboli/
medallion 6.3 cm in diameter
“Physiologus” and the bestiaries ascribe to the fire stones such qualities which the antique writers did not see in “lapides piroboli” /pyritis/ /Pliny, XXXVI.21.39/. The bestiary distinguishes male and female stones and says that their contiguity produces an all-consuming flame.
The bestiary tries to persuade man to flee from fleshly love and compares Samson who yielded to temptation with Joseph who conquered Sin, and Eve’s sinfulness with the chastity of Susan. Philippe de Thaun /2843—3014/ and Guillaume le Clerc /351 — 398/ developed the symbolic interpretation of “Physiologus”.
The miniature illuminating the text about the fire stones traditionally shows the figures of a man and a woman on top of a mountain enveloped in flames, or two burning fire stones.





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