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Tree Faces & the Green Man Myth

If you’ve ever shopped for outdoor wall décor, you’ve probably come across some curious statues and wall sculptures that feature a strange tree-faced man.</br></br>While one might expect nature themes in outdoor décor, there is something otherworldly about the way this figure is typically presented; sometimes he's covered in foliage and other times it even sprouts from his face, yet he's always alert and watching.</br></br>It’s a recurring theme that might inspire questions like: “Why is this man covered with leaves?”  and “Why would I want this guy watching over my yard?” So, we turned over every leaf to find you the answers.</br></br><strong>The Man, the Myth</strong></br></br>Well, it turns out these sculptures of looming and leafy-faced men are classic décor elements that have their roots in European folklore. This particular figure comes from the ancient pagan myth of a forest guardian dubbed <a title="University of the Sunshine Coast" href="http://research.usc.edu.au/vital/access/manager/Repository/usc:894" target="_blank">Green Man</a>.</br></br>It's essentially a masculine version of Mother Earth, <a title="Green Man Enigma" href="http://www.greenmanenigma.com/theories.html" target="_blank">symbolizing life, rebirth and growth</a>, a figure of magic and mystery that appears in stories with nymphs, fairies, and even King Arthur and his knights.</br></br>Oddly enough, the Green Man later evolved to become a common symbol in church architecture during the Renaissance, and his likeness can still be found in art and on buildings in the United Kingdom and elsewhere across Europe.</br></br><strong>The Legacy </strong></br></br>With this rich and storied past, the Green Man carries hints of various cultures from centuries ago. And, although many of the myths of yore have faded into history, imagery of the Green Man can still be a great addition to any home.</br></br>Whether in the form of a sculpture watching over your garden or as outdoor wall art peering across your patio, this treelike face can bring an interesting story, and a nod to long-gone cultures as a fun way to relate to nature.
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