Seat of the Mighty Oak

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The rustic movement of the mid-nineteenth century was characterized by designs that were made to look like they were from the country. Elegant and slim curved lines in furniture gave way to bulkier and heavier forms made from pieces that came directly from the trees often with the bark still intact.

In decorative furniture this often took the form of chairs made from rough tree limbs curved to form arms and chair backs, chair legs made from tree roots growing upwards. This kind of design was mimicked in cemetery furniture, as well, as seen in this cemetery bench in the Mount Carmel Cemetery at Hillsdale, Illinois.

The rough limbs are curved. The seat and the seat back of the bench is smooth to add to the comfort of sitting on the bench. The bench is adorned with two large upside down acorns on either side.

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The acorn, seed of the mighty oak, is a symbol of prosperity and fruitfulness.  When the acorn is paired with oak leaves it is seen as a traditional symbol of strength.  The single acorn can represent a kernel of truth born into spiritual growth.  Twin acorns can represent male sexuality.  Two acorns can also represent truth and power of the Holy Spirit. The former is revealed in the Earthly realm and the later after entering the Heavenly realm.

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