Apr 20

Doppelgänger Week

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How They Met Themselves
Dante Gabriel Rossetti
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“On a winter night I hear the Easter bell:
I knock on graves and quicken the dead,
Until at last in a grave I see — myself."

~ Vyacheslav Ivanov, Winter Sonnets: XI

Doppelgänger, German for "double-goer" or "double-walker," is an apparition of oneself, either real or ghostly, though the word is now also used to mean alter-ego, mirror image, or a gothic twinning. Doppelgänger week is an internet meme in which users of social networking websites change their profile picture to that of celebrities, athletes, historical figures, or friends with whom they share a physical resemblance. Famous doppelgängers in literature include ones in "William Wilson" by Edgar Allen Poe, Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg, and "The Jolly Corner" by Henry James. Have you ever encountered your own doppelgänger?

Doppelgänger Week, the first week of February, starting on Sunday and ending on Saturday, is an internet game whereby users of social networking websites change their profile pictures to that of celebrities, athletes, historical figures, paintings, or friends with whom they share appearance traits. This internet meme started in 2010.

In fiction and folklore, a doppelgänger (literally "double-goer") is a look-alike or double of a living person, sometimes portrayed as a paranormal phenomenon, and in some traditions as a harbinger of bad luck. In other traditions and stories, One's 'double-goer' is an evil twin.

In Norse mythology, a vardøger is a ghostly double who precedes in time the appearance a living person and is seen performing their actions in advance. 


In Breton mythology as well as in Cornish and Norman French folklore, the doppelgänger is a version of the Ankou, a personification of death.

Designed by Carol A.L Martin, this tartan has a ghostly double pattern.

There are many famous accounts of individuals seeing their own doppelgänger.   Click Rossetti's "How They Met Themselves" (1864) for more treatments of the double in literature.

Officially registered tartan graphics on this site courtesy of The Scottish Tartans Authority.  Other tartans from talented tartan artists may also be featured.

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