Omas Pens - Tauromaquia Fountain Pen O09A0072

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Derived from the Latin taurus (bull) and from the Greek machia (battle), the Tauromaquia was a widespread spectacle throughout the Mediterranean during the second millennium BC. The origins of the event are still debated today but most historians agree that games involving men and bulls were held in both ancient Greece and ancient Rome.

In Mycenaean culture the bull was a revered animal. We are aware of this thanks to well-known legends, frescos, figures in bas-relief and seals used during the "bull jumping ceremony" in which a priest-cum-acrobat would seize a running bull by the horns and then do a somersault onto the back of the animal, which in all likelihood was then sacrificed.

During medieval periods Christian nobles and well-to-do Muslims (some suggest that bullfighting dates back to Muslim control) proved themselves in the arena by fighting and killing numerous bulls.

It was during the reign of John II that the first dedicated bullfighting rings were built in Spain. It is a pastime that has had both support and opposition from the authorities through the ages and which has inspired poets such as Garcia Lorca, painters such as Picasso and writers of the calibre of Hemingway.

Today the Tauromaquia still takes place in Spain and to a lesser extent in Mexico and Portugal. The event consists of fighting with a bull, usually reared on a special farm, according to a passionate and intense ritual. Folklore, colours and music merge into one to create an incredible contrast of a fight to the death between man and beast and the suspended silence of the final act.

It is not easy to recreate this drama and the emotions of participants and spectators using a pen, yet when held between the fingers, it soon becomes apparent that the small but precise images take nothing away from the tension engulfing the scene. Man and beast scrutinise each other as the final moment draws near, the moment when victory is achieved or defeat suffered.

The figure of the bullfighter is elegant, the position perfect. The clothing is adorned with the symbols of luck and courage worn by valiant performers. The face is hidden but the concentration and determination are easy to imagine.

The use of enamel and precious metal on this superb fountain pen dedicated to a sophisticated yet primeval struggle evoke the dominant colours of the bullfight: the red, purple and bright yellow cape, the powerful black bull and the orange colour of the sand and sun.

The pen is fitted with an 18 carat gold nib engraved with flowers to symbolise harmony and light. The top of the cap is made from natural horn and has been left deliberately simple, austere even, to symbolise the arena with its external arcade, internal terracing and the central part of the space used for the fight itself. A range of meanings, bright colours and talents for a limited edition fountain pen designed not just used for writing but as a work of art to be showcased.

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