Raven Symbolism & Meaning (+ Spirit, Totem & Omens)

Are you interested in the Raven Spirit Animal? Then this guide is for you!

A good number of people don’t know the clear distinction between ravens and crows.

Ravens are bulkier and larger. Actually, they are almost as big as their cousins, the hawks. Unlike the crows, ravens have shiny black feathers.

Crows’ feathers are dull and lackluster.

Having the raven as your spirit guide can be a fascinating experience. This is more so because these birds are known for their intelligence.

With their vast repertoire of vocalizations, ravens can actually mimic humans. These birds are thought to be more intelligent than some apes.

With all their stellar qualities, ravens have a negative reputation because they are carrion birds. They feed on the decaying meat of dead animals.

When this bird flies into your life, it could be a message that someone or something is threatening to devour your achievements.

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What’s the Raven Meaning and Symbolism?

Symbol of Psychic Powers

Some artistic impressions of the raven indicate it has a third eye. This is in reference to its psychic and occult powers.

Some people believe that the raven spirit animal enables one to predict the future. What this bird is saying is that you need to see beyond your immediate material world.

Symbol of Loss and Death

The raven is covered in a shiny black cover that makes it resemble an evil undertaker. It is the raven’s association with the color black that links it to darkness, loss, and death.

Across many cultures, the raven is regarded as a sign of evil. It is said to be the bringer of bad news.

Symbol of Strength and Protection

In ancient cultures from across the globe, ravens were seen as special messengers of the deities. They had the ability to crisscross the physical and spiritual realm with ease.

They carried your prayers from this world to the other and brought back the answers you needed to move on with your life.

Symbol of Intellect and Wisdom

Ravens are some of the most intelligent birds in the animal kingdom. With a range of well over 100 vocalizations, this bird can imitate just about any speech that takes its fancy.

Ravens are symbolic of mental acuity. Having the raven as your spirit animal guide enables you to learn new things with ease.

Symbol of Resilience and Adaptability

Ravens can survive just about everywhere in the world. They are found in mountains, forests, hot deserts, and even in the Arctic wilderness.

They thrive in rural areas as well as in towns. As such, the raven spirit animal reminds us to be versatile and adaptable.

Whenever you are faced with a problem, step back and look at the best way of handling it. Don’t rely on the same tired methods day in, day out.

Symbolic Meaning of Raven Totem Animal in Various Cultures

Raven Symbolism in Christian Culture

In Christianity, the raven is closely linked to the story of Noah’s Ark. It is said that ravens made a feast of the bodies of all those who perished in the flood.

Christians see this as a reminder that failure to listen to God leads to death.

Some versions of the story of Noah’s Ark indicate that the ravens were banished from Ark. In Christianity, this indicates that you can’t mess up with God’s creation and hope to survive.

It is a tacit reminder that the wages of sin is death.

This myth further says that the raven came back to plead with Noah to be allowed back into the Ark. Noah would have none of it because he knew that God’s judgment was final.

In this aspect, the raven is equated to Satan, the Father of all tricksters.

Indeed, because of this bird’s association with the Devil, many early Christians saw it as a symbol of pain, suffering, and death.

This is further given credence by the fact that the raven has an affinity for dead bodies.

Raven Symbolism in African Culture

Many African tribes associated the raven with loss, death, and ill-omen. This is because the demeanor and behavior of this bird painted an intimidating picture.

Indeed, many African communities did not want to hear the croaking calls of the raven anywhere near their homes.

Children were forbidden from mentioning the raven’s name at night, as this would invite misfortune or death into the homestead.

Adults, too, spoke the name of this carrion eater in hushed tones for fear of inviting ill-omen on their families.

The raven was also closely linked to witchcraft and dark magic. It was thought that feared witches would keep ravens, owls, snakes, and bats as their companions.

However, the raven got appreciation from some communities, who felt that it was a messenger between the world of the living and that of the dead.

These communities looked at the raven as a symbol of insight and prophecy. This bird helped these people connect to their dead ancestors.

Raven Symbolism in Native American Culture

Some Native American tribes, such as the Salish and the Inuit, look at the raven in a favorable light. They contend that this spirit animal played a pivotal role in the creation of the world.

They believe that the raven has always worked with many to protect the environment and create the right balance in all living things.

This is demonstrated by how the raven cleans the land of all carrion.

In Native American culture, the raven spirit animal empowers you to move with ease through the various states of your consciousness.

It calls for the wisdom of this spirit guide to change your awareness based on the truths being revealed to you by the forces of the Universe.

Most Native American tribes respected the raven as a divine messenger between the world of the living and the spirit world.

Ravens or their images were used in spiritual rituals that needed the power of magic to pass important messages to the other world.

The raven’s black color, according to Native American tribes, symbolized the black void from which everything came.

The raven reminds us that our lives are intertwined with everything else in the Universe – whether in the past, present, or future.

Symbolism of the Raven in Celtic Culture

In Celtic mythologies, special birds acted as intercessors between the material world and the world of the gods.

The raven falls in this category. It was believed that some deities would transform themselves into ravens and visit the material world to get a closer look at their subjects.

Celtic mythology also has it that ravens were the custodians of wisdom.

It was believed that giving a newborn child a drink from a raven’s skull would make this child strong, wise, and focused.

Ravens were also thought to possess the power of prophecy.

They would go around the world collecting information from various sources, and this would help people to predict what was to follow.

Ravens set good examples to Celtic warriors on how to wage war. The cruel nature of these birds taught the warriors to obliterate their enemies and take away as much as they could from their lands.

Symbolism of the Raven in Eastern Culture

In Japan, ancient Shintoism holds that ravens were special messengers from the deities. They were closely associated with the Amaterasu-Omikami, the Sun goddess.

The ancient Samurai warriors of Japan looked to the ravens for inspiration when they set out for battle. It is no wonder that some Samurai units were feared for their pitilessness.

The Chinese believed that the ravens were given authority to rule over the crows.

The Bhutan revered the raven so much that they made it one of their national symbols.

The raven takes a sinister or ominous meaning in the Philippines. Seeing this bird near one’s compound meant misfortune for the entire household.

Urgent cleansing was required to remove the curse brought on any home by the presence of the raven.

Raven in Norse Mythology

In Norse mythology, the god Odin had two ravens named Huginn and Muninn, which represented thought and memory, respectively. These ravens would fly around the world and bring back information to Odin.

The two ravens were also believed to be his messengers and would accompany him in battle.

Raven in Greek Mythology

In Greek mythology, the raven is associated with the god Apollo and is said to be a symbol of bad luck.

According to myth, Apollo sent a white raven to spy on his lover, Coronis. When the raven returned with news of her infidelity, Apollo turned the bird black as punishment.

Raven in Greek Mythology

In Greek mythology, the raven is associated with the god Apollo and is said to be a symbol of bad luck.

According to myth, Apollo sent a white raven to spy on his lover, Coronis. When the raven returned with news of her infidelity, Apollo turned the bird black as punishment.

When the Raven is Your Spirit Animal

When the raven spirit animal flies into your life, it asks you to keep your secrets to yourself. Your enemies cannot get to you if they have no information about you.

People with the raven spirit guide have no time for dishonest companions. They mingle only with people whose word is their bond.

The raven spirit animal encourages you to understand the mysteries of your life. This bird reminds you that you are in this life for a purpose.

You are meant to share your skills and talents with others in your world.

This spirit animal encourages you to associate and share knowledge with men and women of your ilk. These are the people that want to see you grow and rise to the next level of your existence.

Do not lower your standards for anything, for this will convince you to eventually settle for mediocrity.

The raven has the ability to mimic a variety of sounds. This spirit guide urges you to embrace learning new things.

Open your mind and heart to the lessons you get from your interactions with nature and other beings in the Universe.

The Raven Power Animal

How much of your childhood do you miss? The raven spirit animal knows your needs, and it will help you connect to those aspects of your childhood that you long for.

The raven power animal wants you to be happy.

By intervening in your life, it is telling you to deal with the impediments that stand in the way of your peace and progress.

It is said that this bird has the power to see the darkest places and around the tightest corners. You need this kind of skill to deal with the fear that emanates from your past.

Trust the raven power animal to help you break down the dangers that have followed you from your childhood.

The power guide is particularly close to those whose childhood has been less than satisfactory.

He flies to the other side of time and space and helps you to put right the pains you have been battling.

Few forces can detect the pain of physical, mental, and emotional abuse like the raven does.

The raven power guide will help you to find the joy that marked the innocent moments of your childhood.

The Raven Totem Animal

If you were born with the raven totem, it means you are innovative. You are not afraid of the kind of challenges that would put off an ordinary person.

The raven is known for its fearlessness. It is not afraid of dark places. When this spirit guide is your totem, you embrace these qualities.

You’ll do your things quietly without announcing your plans or intentions. People with this totem don’t speak much about what they intend to do.

They let their results speak for them.

Being born with the raven totem means you are well protected. You have the guidance you need to achieve your spiritual and material goals.

You are exactly where you’d like to be. The bridge between you and the spiritual realm is open and accessible.

This means you can freely interact with your divine minders, letting them know what you are going through and the kind of support you need.

The raven totem will expose you to the world of psychic powers and magic. This will enable you to change your life meaningfully, creating the impact you’d like to see around you.

There’s no doubt the raven totem keeps challenging you to be the best you can be. You will look at yourself in all honesty and acknowledge your strengths.

Ravens encounters and Omens

Meeting the raven does not happen as a matter of coincidence. If you listen to your intuition closely, you’ll realize that this bird is guiding you in a certain definite direction.

Seeing a raven means you need support to make a crucial decision concerning some aspects of your life.

This spirit animal comes your way because you have a mystic aura about you. The raven wants you to unleash this talent to benefit the world.

People who frequently encounter ravens have a keen sense of justice. They don’t allow their emotions to meddle when they have a critical decision to make about right and wrong.

The raven teaches you to detach yourself from conflicts that prevent you from carrying out your commission in this world.

Ravens Mythology and Folklore

In most communities, the raven was viewed in a negative light. Since it was associated with dead or dying animals, people felt it was a symbol of death, doom, and loss.

Ravens have been associated with psychic powers and the occult, often touted as the perfect companions for wizards, witches, and other practitioners of dark magic.

However, there’s a positive side to the raven story. For example, in Japan and China, this bird was associated with family loyalty and love.

Japanese and Chinese children were given raven amulets by their parents to wear as they went about their activities.

This symbolized protection and focus.

In Tibet, the raven is considered the custodian of wisdom. These birds are regarded to be both wise and lucky.

The Native American mythologies depict the raven as a co-creator with the gods.

This bird was sent into the world to help people deal with the challenges they encounter in the course of serving their purpose.

The raven is also key in passing important messages between humans and deities.

The Mohawks believed that ravens act as a guide to lost souls. This bird points one in the right direction – the direction that leads to true happiness.

Raven Tattoo Meaning

Ravens have many different meanings across the world. Getting a raven image tattooed on your skin could convey many different things.

For example, many go for the raven tattoo as an expression of their belief in the afterlife. This is particularly important to someone who has lost a loved one.

The raven tattoo reminds them of the love they once shared with this person.

Having a raven tattoo also shows one’s belief in supernatural powers. Ravens are naturally mystical, and many believe they pave the way between this world and the world of the gods.

Someone who has overcome a dark part of their life may want to have a raven tattoo as a sign of their victory.

This is particularly common with people who have battled and won against depression, addiction, abuse, and any form of prejudice.

Raven as Spiritual and Religious Symbol

Ravens have long been associated with spiritual and religious symbolism across various cultures and belief systems.

In this section, we will explore some of the ways in which ravens have been viewed as symbols of the divine.

Raven Symbolism in Bible

In the Bible, ravens are mentioned several times, often as a symbol of God’s provision. In Genesis 8:7, a raven is sent out by Noah to find dry land after the flood. In 1 Kings 17:4-6, ravens bring bread and meat to the prophet Elijah while he is hiding in the wilderness.

These stories have led to the belief that ravens are messengers of God and a symbol of divine providence.

Raven as Spirit Animal

Ravens are also viewed as spirit animals in many Native American cultures. They are seen as powerful totems that represent transformation, intuition, and spiritual awakening.

If you feel a strong connection to the raven, it may be a sign that you need to explore your inner self and embrace your spiritual journey.

Seeing a Raven: Omens and Prophecies

In some cultures, seeing a raven can be a sign of good or bad luck. In Norse mythology, for example, the god Odin had two ravens, Huginn and Muninn, who would fly across the world and bring back information to him.

If you see a raven, it may be a sign that you need to pay attention to the messages the universe is trying to send you.

Raven Tattoo Meaning

Raven tattoos are popular among those who view the bird as a symbol of wisdom, protection, and transformation.

In some cultures, a raven tattoo can also be a sign of death and rebirth, as the bird is associated with the cycle of life and death.

In conclusion, ravens have been viewed as powerful symbols of the divine across many cultures and belief systems.

Whether you see them as messengers of God, spirit animals, or omens of good or bad luck, the raven is a fascinating and complex creature that continues to captivate our imagination.

Raven’s Characteristics and Symbolic Meanings

Ravens are fascinating birds with a rich history of symbolism in various cultures. Highly intelligent and adaptable, they are known for their problem-solving skills and distinctive appearance and voice.

Here are some characteristics and symbolic meanings associated with ravens.

Raven’s Intelligence and Problem-Solving

Ravens are considered one of the smartest birds around, with the ability to solve complex problems and use tools.

They are also great at imitating sounds, including human speech, which has led to their association with magic and mystery.

In many cultures, ravens are seen as messengers between the spirit world and the physical world, conveying important information and guidance.

Raven’s Appearance and Voice

Ravens are known for their black plumage and distinctive croaking call. Their appearance and voice have led to their association with darkness and death in some cultures.

However, they also represent transformation and rebirth, as they shed their feathers and grow new ones each year.

Raven’s Habitat and Diet

Ravens are found in a variety of habitats, from forests to deserts to urban areas. They are opportunistic feeders, scavenging for carrion and also hunting small animals and insects.

Their ability to adapt to different environments and food sources has led to their association with survival and resilience.

In summary, ravens are intelligent and adaptable birds with a rich history of symbolism in various cultures.

Their appearance, voice, habitat, and diet all contribute to their symbolic meanings, which include magic, mystery, darkness, death, transformation, rebirth, survival, and resilience.

Raven in Literature and Art

Ravens have been a popular subject in literature and art for centuries, often depicted as a symbol of death, mystery, and the supernatural.

In this section, we will explore the role of ravens in literature and art, focusing on two main sub-sections: “Raven in Edgar Allan Poe’s Works” and “Raven in Myths and Legends.”

Raven in Edgar Allan Poe’s Works

Edgar Allan Poe’s famous poem, “The Raven,” is perhaps the most well-known example of the raven’s use in literature. In the poem, the raven is a symbol of death and loss, haunting the narrator and driving him to madness.

The raven’s repetition of the word “Nevermore” adds to the eerie and foreboding atmosphere of the poem.

Poe also uses ravens in other works, such as “The Masque of the Red Death” and “The Philosophy of Composition.”

In these works, the raven serves as a symbol of the inevitability of death and the futility of trying to escape it.

Raven in Myths and Legends

Ravens have played a prominent role in myths and legends across cultures. In Norse mythology, Odin had two ravens, Huginn and Muninn, who flew around the world and brought back information to him.

In Native American cultures, the raven is often seen as a trickster figure, but also as a symbol of creation and transformation.

In many cultures, the raven is associated with death and the afterlife. For example, in Celtic mythology, ravens were seen as messengers of the gods, and their appearance was seen as a sign of impending death.

In Hindu mythology, the god Shani is often depicted with a raven, which is said to represent the god of death, Yama.

In art, the raven’s symbolism has been used in various ways. It has graced canvases and sculptures, often serving as a visual anchor for themes of transformation, mystery, and the dichotomy between light and dark.

Overall, the raven’s presence in literature and art has been significant, with its symbolism continuing to captivate and intrigue audiences.

Raven as Symbol of Life Events

Ravens have long been associated with life events. Their presence can create a sense of anticipation and excitement, as individuals prepare for the unexpected and embrace the transformative power of life events.

In this section, we will explore the various ways in which ravens symbolize different life events.

Raven Symbolizing Death and Renewal

Ravens are often associated with death and renewal. In many cultures, they are seen as messengers between the worlds of the living and the dead.

They are also seen as symbols of rebirth and renewal, as they are scavengers that feed on the dead and help to break down and recycle organic matter.

Raven Symbolizing Birth and Transformation

Ravens are also associated with birth and transformation. In some cultures, they are seen as symbols of fertility and new beginnings.

They are also associated with the transformative power of nature, as they are able to change their appearance and behavior to adapt to different environments.

Raven Symbolizing Love and Loss

Ravens are sometimes associated with love and loss. In some cultures, they are seen as symbols of fidelity and devotion, as they mate for life and are known to mourn the loss of their partners.

They are also associated with the pain of loss, as they are often seen as omens of death and sorrow.

In conclusion, ravens are powerful symbols of life events.

Whether they are seen as messengers of death and renewal, symbols of birth and transformation, or emblems of love and loss, they remind us of the cyclical nature of life and the power of transformation and renewal.

Raven’s Role in Warfare

Raven as Battle Symbol

In many cultures, ravens have been considered as a symbol of war and battle. They were believed to be a sign of impending war and were often seen circling over the battlefield.

The sight of a raven was seen as an omen of bloodshed and death. Ravens were also seen as a symbol of victory and were often depicted on flags and banners.

Raven as Warrior’s Guide

In addition to being a symbol of war, ravens were also believed to be a guide for warriors.

In Norse mythology, Odin, the god of war and wisdom, had two ravens named Huginn and Muninn, which means thought and memory. These ravens would fly around the world and gather information for Odin.

Warriors would often look to ravens for guidance and inspiration in battle.

The connection between ravens and warriors is also seen in Native American cultures.

The raven was seen as a spirit guide and protector for warriors. It was believed that the raven would guide warriors through battle and protect them from harm.

In conclusion, ravens have played a significant role in warfare throughout history. They have been seen as a symbol of war and a guide for warriors.

The sight of a raven was seen as an omen of bloodshed and death, but also as a symbol of victory. Warriors looked to ravens for guidance and protection in battle.

Raven as Symbol of Knowledge and Wisdom

Ravens have been associated with knowledge and wisdom for centuries. In Norse mythology, Odin, the god of wisdom, had two ravens named Huginn and Muninn, which represented thought and memory, respectively. These ravens would fly around the world and bring back information to Odin. They were his eyes and ears, providing him with valuable insights and knowledge.

The raven’s association with knowledge and wisdom is not limited to Norse mythology. In many cultures, the raven is seen as a symbol of intelligence, cunning, and insight. Ravens are highly intelligent birds, and they have the ability to solve complex problems. They are also known for their resourcefulness and adaptability, which are qualities that are highly valued in many cultures.

The raven’s association with knowledge and wisdom is also reflected in its appearance. Ravens are often depicted as dark, mysterious birds with piercing eyes.

Their black feathers are associated with the unknown and the hidden, while their sharp beaks and claws symbolize their ability to cut through illusions and reveal the truth.

In many cultures, the raven is also seen as a teacher and a guide. It is believed that the raven can help you gain insight into yourself and the world around you.

By observing the raven’s behavior and listening to its calls, you can learn valuable lessons about life and the human experience.

In conclusion, the raven is a powerful symbol of knowledge and wisdom. Its association with thought, memory, insight, and cunning make it a valuable ally for anyone seeking to gain a deeper understanding of themselves and the world around them.

Whether you are looking for guidance, inspiration, or simply a deeper connection to nature, the raven is a powerful and mysterious creature that can help you on your journey.

Raven as Symbol of Magic and Mystery

Ravens have been associated with magic and mystery for centuries. They are often depicted as messengers between the earthly realm and the spiritual world, and are believed to have prophetic abilities.

In many cultures, the raven is seen as a keeper of secrets and a guide to hidden knowledge.

The raven is also known as a trickster in many mythologies. In some stories, the raven is a mischievous figure that plays pranks on others, while in others it is a wise and cunning creature that outsmarts its enemies.

This duality of the raven’s nature is part of what makes it such a fascinating symbol.

The raven is a member of the corvid family, which also includes crows, magpies, and jays.

These birds are known for their intelligence and their ability to solve problems. They are also known for their loud and distinctive calls, which can be heard from great distances.

In some cultures, the raven is seen as a symbol of death and darkness. However, in others it is seen as a bringer of light and knowledge.

The raven’s black feathers are often associated with the unknown and the mysterious, and are thought to represent the hidden depths of the human psyche.

Overall, the raven is a complex and multifaceted symbol that has been interpreted in many different ways throughout history.

Whether you see the raven as a messenger of magic and mystery, a keeper of secrets, or a trickster figure, its symbolism is sure to captivate and intrigue you.

Raven as Symbol of Change and Adaptability

Ravens are known for their intelligence and adaptability, making them a symbol of change and transformation in many cultures.

They are often associated with death and rebirth, as they are scavengers that feed on the remains of other animals, but they are also seen as messengers of change and transformation.

In Native American cultures, the raven is often seen as a trickster figure that brings about change and transformation through its cunning and intelligence.

It is also seen as a symbol of courage and strength, as it is able to adapt to changing circumstances and survive in a variety of environments.

The raven’s ability to use tools is another example of its adaptability and intelligence. Ravens have been observed using sticks and other objects to obtain food, and they are able to solve complex problems and puzzles.

In many cultures, the raven is also associated with prophecy and divination. Its ability to see beyond the veil of death and transformation makes it a powerful symbol of change and transformation, and it is often seen as a guide to those who are going through difficult times.

Overall, the raven’s symbolism as a symbol of change and adaptability is a reminder that we must be willing to embrace change and adapt to new circumstances in order to survive and thrive.

Whether we are facing personal challenges or global crises, the raven reminds us that we have the intelligence and resilience to overcome even the most difficult obstacles.

Raven as Symbol of Darkness and Evil

Ravens have long been associated with darkness and evil in many cultures. These birds are often depicted as ominous creatures, lurking in the shadows and waiting to strike.

In many myths and legends, the raven is seen as a harbinger of death, a symbol of sin, and a messenger of evil.

The association of ravens with darkness and evil can be traced back to ancient times. In Norse mythology, Odin, the god of wisdom, had two ravens, Huginn and Muninn, who would fly around the world and bring back information to him.

However, in other cultures, ravens were seen as less benevolent. In some Native American tribes, the raven was seen as a trickster figure, a shape-shifter who could bring both good and bad luck.

In literature, the raven has often been used as a symbol of darkness and evil. Perhaps the most famous example is Edgar Allan Poe’s poem “The Raven,” in which the bird represents the speaker’s unending grief over the loss of his love, Lenore.

The raven’s constant repetition of the word “Nevermore” reinforces the idea that the speaker will never be able to escape his sorrow.

Despite the negative associations with ravens, it’s important to remember that these birds are also symbols of intelligence, creativity, and adaptability.

In many cultures, the raven is seen as a wise and powerful creature, one that can bring both light and darkness into the world.

Overall, the raven’s symbolism is complex and multifaceted. While it can represent darkness and evil, it can also symbolize wisdom, creativity, and adaptability.

Whether you see the raven as a positive or negative symbol may depend on your own cultural background and personal beliefs.

Raven as Symbol of Strength and Fearlessness

Ravens are often associated with strength and fearlessness. In many cultures, the raven is considered a powerful and mysterious bird that represents the ability to overcome obstacles and challenges.

One of the reasons why the raven is seen as a symbol of strength is because of its size. Ravens are one of the largest birds in the world, and their wingspan can reach up to 4 feet.

Their size and strength allow them to fly great distances and withstand strong winds, making them a formidable creature.

In addition to their physical strength, ravens are also known for their fearlessness. They are not easily intimidated by other animals, and will often stand their ground in the face of danger.

This fearlessness is a trait that many people admire and aspire to emulate.

The raven’s strength and fearlessness have also made it a popular symbol in popular culture. In many movies and books, ravens are portrayed as powerful and mysterious creatures that possess magical powers.

They are often depicted as the companions of giants and other powerful beings, further cementing their reputation as symbols of strength and fearlessness.

Overall, the raven’s strength and fearlessness make it a powerful symbol that has captivated people’s imaginations for centuries.

Whether you are looking to overcome challenges in your own life or simply admire the bird’s beauty and power, the raven is a creature that is sure to inspire and impress.

Final Thoughts…

The dark, intimidating look of the ravens indicates darkness and everything negative that comes with it.

This is further given credence by the fact that these birds feed on dead or dying animals. Some people tend to dwell on the negative aspects of these birds.

They see it as a symbol of loneliness, rejection, despair, and even death.

However, the raven spirit animal can be a charmer. With its resourcefulness, intellect, and aggressiveness, it can be said to stand for respect and protection.

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