Tuesday 18 January 2011

The Apple of the eye

On Sunday night because there were so few in church I took the service of Compline the ancient form of night prayer, in it are these words  "Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of thy wings" taken from Psalm 17, beautiful words as the night closes in around us and we feel protected.
The words also reminded me of the apple that "I'm in the garage" has now begun to make shuttles from, the wood comes from my father's apple trees and so is very special to Jane and myself.  Although as the branch was only cut in the Summer it was put into a special solution to hasten the drying process and this is the result.   Just look at that grain.

We say that someone is the apple of our eye, meaning that they are special and much loved. The saying originally meant the central aperture of the eye, the pupil, presumably because apples were the most common sphere-shaped object around at that time.  However, the Hebrew translation is little man of the eye, meaning the reflection of someone seen in a pupil so although I am no scholar, it would appear that when the King James bible was translated in 1611, exactly 400 years ago it acquired the word apple.

Indeed Shakespeare used the phrase in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 1600:
Flower of this purple dye,
Hit with Cupid’s archery,
Sink in apple of his eye 

If you want to see what a pop-a-bobbin shuttle looks like in apple then go to Martha's blog, these are the only two to have been made so far and I think at the moment they are the "apple of my eye!"


  1. That is and absolutely beautiful shuttle!

  2. I was going to ask you if the wood for my shuttle was special, and I am moved to hear that it is very special indeed. Thank you so much.

  3. Wow, that's SO pretty. Brings back memories too. Wonder who'll be eating dad's apples next year, eh?

  4. The wood is beautiful! Your Dh is doing a fantastic job on the shuttles he is making.

  5. Oh my! That is beautiful. To have a shuttle to make lace that you love made from a tree that has so many special memories is priceless. A true treasure.

  6. Beautiful shuttle, just beautiful.

  7. I've missed a lot of posts! This wood is beautiful! What a treasure!

  8. I keep hoping I will be lucky enough to get one of these shuttles one of these days. I seem to keep missing when they are listed at Etsy. I want one that is either purple heart, Bloodwood or Burl maple. I want the bobbin type with a hook. Anyhow...I keep hoping and hoping to get me one in my Winter Skin Dried hands for me to tat with for me own pleasure. ...Okay...I will keep watching away here.


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