The binding circle, containing the four elements, is the fifth unifying element: ether.
The innermost, green circle is symbolic of Christ and the path of the Sun. This basic diagram, the quatrefoil, is frequently used in illuminations and was fundamental in the composition of many Medieval works. The 'four-ness' of earthly life was fairly central to the thinking of the time.
Many Medieval cathedrals, stained glass windows – even medical treatments – were based upon the theory of the 'four-ness' of created life and the world. There are four directions, four winds, four evangelists, four elements, four seasons, four phases of the Moon, four conditions (wet, dry, hot, cold).... and to the Medieval mind there were four temperaments, into which everyone was grouped. NEXT
The very centre represents the sun, as well as the Throne of God and the 7th day of rest. The central, vertical axis is symbolic of the ontological axis that connects Heaven and Earth.
Six represents time and the Sun, which both give and destroy. The red rectangle in the figure,left, measures √3 along its longest side. There are three of these rectangles inside a regular hexagon.
Root 3 ( orange line) is also the height of a standard vesica (vesica piscis). The vesica piscis, formed of two circles that each pass through the centre of the other, is symbolic of Christ. This is because the two circles represent Heaven and Earth, respectively and both are united in Jesus Christ. Root 3 is also symbolic of Christ entering in. A number of cathedral porches have a carving of Christ in majesty, seated within a vesica. The illumination below, of Christ and David, demonstrates the use of the hexagon and vesica as compositional tools. The hexagon unites the two worlds, Heaven and Earth. NEXT: Carpet Pages