new icn messageflickr-free-ic3d pan white
The Great Seal | by Hammer51012
Back to photostream

The Great Seal

The Great Seal ~ One the reverse side of the U.S. One Dollar Bill ~


The 1782 resolution adopting the seal blazons the image on the reverse as a pyramid unfinished. In the zenith an eye in a triangle, The pyramid is conventionally shown as consisting of 13 layers of blocks to refer to the 13 original states. There are also 13 sides shown on the ribbon. The adopting resolution provides that it is inscribed on its base with the date MDCCLXXVI (1776) in Roman numerals.


Two mottos appear: Annuit Cœptis signifies that the Eye of Providence has "approved of (our) undertakings."Novus Ordo Seclorum, freely taken from Virgil, means "a new order of the ages." It is incorrectly rendered as "New World Order" by some theorists, and "a new secular order" by others. The word seclorum does not mean "secular," as one might assume, but is the genitive (possessive) plural form of the word saeculum, meaning (in this context) generation, century, or age. Saeculum did come to mean "age, world" in late, Christian, Latin, and "secular" is derived from it, through secularis. However, the adjective "secularis," meaning "worldly," is not equivalent to the genitive plural seclorum, meaning "of the ages.".


Where the top of the pyramid should be, the Eye of Providence watches over it. The Eye of Providence, or "all-seeing eye," was a well-known classical symbol of the Renaissance. The eye in a triangle design originally was suggested by Pierre Eugene du Simitiere, and later heraldist William Barton improved upon the design.


8 faves
Taken on November 7, 2008