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Word Count: 406
Giovanni Arnolfini and His Bride is a piece that has a great deal of symbolism along with legal function Done in 1434 it was done with oil on wood and is actually only 28 by 111 The piece was a wedding portait and displays Van Eycks love of detail Details such as hair had to be done with a single hair brush First this work shows Arnolfinis wealth being a silk merchant He wears a fur coat appearing in a room of extravigant furnishings Also he dawns a very large hat which was symbolic of wealth at the time His hand position is important swearing an oath of loyalty and fidelity This begins the functioning of a legal document That is in this case for marriage The placing of hands was done and then sworn in front of a noted republic In the mirror one can see two other peopleone the noted republicin red and Van Eyckin blue as a witness He wrote Van Eyck was here and dated the event His bride is an example of what the ideal bride should be Aristocratic women wore white headress and hair in horns Women would pluck their forehead back one to two inches as another expression of prestige The green dress is associated with fertility and her form shows future pregnancy It was probably an arranged marriage and is important to show the premenition of child birth Due to the fact that children were important to the relationship She looks down to show she is respectful and submissive She is positioned by a wisk broom to show her future position at home and cleaning Arnolfini is postioned by an open window to show how he will go out into the world and do business The chandelear has one lit candle that they will blow out after they consumate their marriage In the background a statue of St Margret is on the
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