Candle Holders (Trista): information

Early immigrant and pioneering Ukrainian families drew on these old and familiar symbols to sustain themselves in their new and often harsh environment.  The symbols were used to decorate religious and household items in their new world.
  • The Straight Horizontal Line – represents the earth and symbolizes eternity.
  • The Wavy Line – represents water.  Without water there could be no harvest.  With immigration to the “new world”, the wavy line began to represent the waters of the great Atlantic Ocean.
  • The Circle – represents heavenly fire, the sun – a source of light and life.  It also represents completeness, continuity, and the cyclical nature of the universe.
  • The Moon – represents light at night – help for travelers and to chase away evil powers from the household.
  • The Cross – first appears over 30,000 years ago.  It is related to the sun and to the cult of fire.  It was also an astrological symbol representing the four corners of the earth.  With Christianity it came to represent Christ’s crucifixion and resurrection.
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Royal Ontario Museum
Historical Advisor: Ukrainian Museum of Canada - Ontario Branch

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