Runescape Below the Elbow

Many years ago a friend turned me on to the Agathodaimon font, a dingbat or graphic typeface with each letter corresponding to a medieval alchemy symbol. I was drawn to the ancient symbols, especially the one corresponding to the letter S.

I liked it so much that I adopted it as my personal logo. If I painted a picture or created digital art, I would draw the rune at the bottom near my signature. You can see it in the tab at the top of this page if you look closely.

What is the Meaning of This?

Most often it is defined as the symbol for orpiment, a volcanic mineral that is a deep orange-yellow, and extremely toxic.

At least one source says that it represents olive oil. Even if it’s anecdotal, I prefer the olive oil story. It makes more sense visually, too: one can imagine the rune having two olives on the bottom and branches at the top.

To Arms!

My son is also a fan of the symbol and has threatened for years to get it inked onto his arm as his first tattoo. I am ambivalent about tattoos, but he’s a grown-ass man that can do as he pleases with his forearms. The other day he sent us a pic of his newly inked rune. I found it an endearing, rather subtle way to permanently remember dear old dad, and I’m honored to have him sport it.

Posted on: February 25, 2023, by :