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“Everyone loves a conspiracy.”
~ Dan Brown, The Da Vinci Code (2003)
Thomas Malory's Le Morte D'Arthur, tales about the legendary King Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot, Merlin and the Knights of the Round Table, has the Knights of the Round Table witness a divine vision of the Holy Grail on a Whitsunday, prompting their quest to find its true location! Dan Brown's popular novel and film of the same name, The Da Vinci Code, based on historical and speculative research surrounding the meaning and conception of the Holy Grail, created a firestorm of religious and literary controversy from the time it was released. In the story, various clues lead the protagonist to Rosslyn Chapel, the 15th-century chapel located in the village of Roslin, Midlothian, Scotland. Filming locations for the movie included Rosslyn Chapel and Rosslyn Castle in the final scenes of the film. This assymetrical tribute tartan to Rosslyn chapel also encodes into the design mathematical proportions and symbolic colours associated with the alleged secrets and mysteries detailed in the novel, including the 'mystical' Divine Proportion or Golden Section to position the gold line on the blue. Also referred to as the "Golden Mean" this ratio (1.61803) occurs naturally in nature and has been used by artists stretching from Ancient Greece to Da Vinci and through to modern times! 📐⛪📏✝️
The tartan "Roslin Roseline Da Vinci," was inspired by both Dan Brown's book and the filming locations in the 2006 namesake film, The Da Vinci Code. The book and film (and tartan) highlight's the role of Rosslyn Chapel - just six miles south of Edinburgh.
The tartan is based on the Sinclair tartan. From the Scottish Register of Tartans:
"It was Sir William St. Clair (third and last Prince of Orkney) who founded the Chapel in 1446. The design is unusual in that it is not symmetrical and uses the 'mystical' Divine Proportion or Golden Section to position the gold line on the blue. Also called the Golden Mean this ratio (1.61803) occurs naturally in nature and has been used by artists stretching from Ancient Greece to Da Vinci and through to modern times. The blue and white are from the Scottish flag - the Saltire - and the white further represents the human spirit and the white dove that nested in Rosslyn Chapel in the year that that The Da Vinci Code film was released.
Purple pays homage to Scotland's famous heather and the red represents the legendary Rose Line - an energy line on which the Chapel is said to lie. Red is also the colour of Mary Magdalene's hair in Da Vinci's iconic painting, The Last Supper. Finally, the green takes us back to the Chapel and over 100 green men - stone gargoyles whose mouths spout ivy and vines and who were pagan, pre-Christian figures of fertility and power. All these design elements combine to provide a truly unique memento of Scotland's part in the book and film."
Inspired by the famous painting, "The Last Supper," by Leonardo Da Vinci, The Da Vinci Code explores an alternative religious history, whose central plot point is that the Merovingian kings of France were descended from the bloodline of Jesus Christ and Mary Magdalene, ideas derived from Clive Prince's The Templar Revelation (1997) and a series of "Grail Heresy" books by Margaret Starbird.
For more on the book, click the painting of "The Last Supper."