There seems to be some debate about whether the phrase "Annuit Coeptis" is a report that God "has favored our undertakings," or whether it is more of a prayer, harking back to Virgil, that our undertakings might be favored. I am inclined to the latter view.
I've always liked the "other side" of the Great Seal for its more mystical and less bellicose imagery, as it helps depict what American democracy is all about.
To me, it's all about what the motto at the bottom says: "A New Order In The World."
Our governmental task is always unfinished, and we are always required to envision new steps, and to find new ways to build higher upon a foundation which has already been established. That seems to me to be assumed by what is pictured on the "other side" of the Great Seal. The "New Order" established by the American Revolution secures our opportunity, and our obligation, to continue our nation building work.
And as it says on the "front side," that is work we do together: "Out of many, one."
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
318 / The Other Side Of The Great Seal
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