As we have already discussed Angels appear in many religious texts including the Bible and Qur’an. Angels also appear throughout history in artwork, paintings, films and stories as well as records of historic figures. So lets have a look at some of these in more detail.
Angel artwork is very easy to find as more and more people become interested in Angels. For example the Angel of the North sculpture at Gateshead, England, which is a metal statue that stands 20 meters high and has a wing span of 54 meters. In the 1980 cherubs became very popular and could be found on everything from wallpaper, wrapping paper, ornaments, paintings and pictures to name but a few. Angel paintings can also be found in stain glass windows and in paintings on walls in religious places like in the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral.
There are many famous painting available to view on line including Annunciation by leonardo da vinci. Over the centuries the representations of angels has changed considerably.
Hollywood has certainly caught on the Angel phenomena and produced some excellent films including Michael, played by John Travolta which is a story about a guardian Angel. There are of course many movies about Angels, too many to mention here.
One of my all time favorite songs is Angels by Robbie Williams, a vary inspiring song that is often played at funerals and karaoke, a song i think will never go out of date. Of courses there are many great songs about Angels including Angel of Harlem by U2. Its not just chart music that contains Angels, you will also find songs in country and western, classical and rock the genre is endless.
Throughout history there are reports and records of historic figures encounters with Angels. These Angels showed themselves in various forms from visions, voices and in human form. We will have a look at just a few.
Joan of Arc (1412 -31)
From the age of 13 it was documented that Joan of Arc had visions and voices talking to her, she later knew these were heavenly messages, naming one of the messengers St Michael. At 16 she received messages that she needed to meet with the French Dauphin, whose troops were loosing control of the country to the English. She received a vision that the town of Orleans would be taken by the English, a few days later her vision can true.
Joan predicted many events that came true in her short life including that she would herself get injured and would be taken captive by the English. Whilst in captivity she told her captors that in less than 7 years they would lose something very important to them. In 6 years and eight months the English lost Paris to the french. Joan did not see this prediction come true as soon after she was captured by the English she was burned at the steak for heresy. Joan always maintained that her visions and voices were her Angels.
J.R.R Tolkien (1892 – 1973)
Tolkien had a hard life, he lost both his parents at a young age and was passed around from relatives to a foster home. He met his wife and they had 4 children and despite hardship he built a loving family home. He created stories which included wizards, elves, fairies and a strange underground creature called a hobbit. The inspiration came to him suddenly whist working in his study, the words in a ‘hole in the ground lived a hobbit.’ These words inspired him to write stories which he called The Hobbit, which was publish in 1937.
One of his sons Christopher was a delicate child and suffered a heart condition that made him a poorly teenager. He was very close to his father and when world war 2 broke out Christoper was called to join the air force, the two communicated regularly and shared their emotions and beliefs in heaven and guardian Angels. Tolkien was worried about his sons safety and prayed constantly for his sons safe return. One November afternoon Tolkien had a vision, in this vision he saw a divine light source that connected to all humans to God and each soul had its own guardian Angel. His visions gave him comfort until his son returned home and they continued to write stories together and in the mid 1950’s The Lord of the Rings was published.
Tolkien always remembered that November day that gave him inspiration and that guardian Angels exist for all of us.
William Blake (1757 – 1827)
At the age of 10 Blake had his first vision of Angels that inspired his poetry. Blake had many visions over the years and may have also communicated with spirts.
Even though Blake came from poverty his parents encouraged his visions and helped him become a painter. He then decided to train as an engraver and at the age of 30 he changed engraving forever by inventing illuminated printing, which he revealed as coming to him in a vision from his late brother Robert. This enabled both text and pictures to be displayed together on one plate for printing. Blake then went on to illustrate both his own work and work of others.
Although Blake didn’t receive much recognition in his life time, and was buried in a paupers grave, Blake had the help of his angels and his work will never be forgotten. He is most famous for his poetry and wrote some of the best known poetry in the English language.
These are just a few historic figures that worked with Angels, some others include St Frances of Assisi, George Washington and George Fredrick Handle.
I hope this has given you some insight into the works of Angles throughout history and shows that Angels can come to us in many forms.