Ornate German text runs along the bottom of this certificate. Two stems of tulips illustrate the space above, both filled with colorful birds. At the bottom of one stem is a small cat-like animal.
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Some scholars believe the forms and characters that appear on fraktur to have religious symbolism. For example, it has been suggested that a three-petal tulip represents the Holy Trinity. However, for the most part fraktur was a commercial venture, and artists were trying to attract customers of varying religious affiliations. It may be, therefore, that the simple shapes and bright colors were merely practical, and intended to attract potential customers. This circa 1819 birth and baptismal certificate includes many of the popular forms, including birds, flowers and animals.