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Branchwork (en); Astwerk (pl); Astwerk (de); Oksornament (et)

"Astwerk" (engl. branch tracery, branchwork; frz. bois mort, branchage; it. intreccio a rami) is a Late Gothic/ Renaissance ornament. Its bare, gnarled branches are usually twisted or bound together and often resemble tracery. The early use of Astwerk in 15th-century art was directly inspired by contemporary architectural theory. The twisted branches visualize the idea that architecture has its origin in natural forms - a theory described by Vitruvius and frequently discussed by German-speaking humanists.

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