Dictionary of Plant symbolism A
Dictionary of Plant Symbolism A
Symbols are universal representations of the important issues in man's live. In this article we describe symbols of the following plants:
See at the end of this page for similar squidoo pages for other plant symbols.
Books on symbolism
Acacia-wood was held in ancient times to be the “Wood of Life.” , it was sacred to the sun god of Egypt.
The plant bears white and pink blooms. It was considered sacred by the Egyptians where the white -red principle was of great mystic importance
It is a funerary symbol signifying resurrection and immortality.
In Hermetic doctrine, it symbolizes soul and immortality, according to the testament of Hiram which teaches that one must know how to die in order to live again in eternity.
The tree gains its importance from the description of the burial of Hiram Abiff, the builder of King Solomon's Temple in Jerusalem.
Symbolic of immortality and moral life. (Christian). Acacia is often represented in Christian art, especially the Romanesque.
In Freemasonry, the acacia represent purity and endurance of the soul.
The distinguishing feature of the Corinthian capital; given more varied treatment in Byzantine capitals [i: Constantinople, 6th cent., with Justinian's monogram]. The scroll forms - a continuous curving stem with branching spirals - is found on ceilings of Italian churches (Rome and Ravenna, 5th-13th cents.), where it symbolizes heaven.
The leaf of the Acanthus is a very common ornamental motif in architecture, its symbolism lays in its growth and its thorns.
The thorns symbolize solicitude about lowly things , they signify the awareness and the pain of sin (Bishop Melito of Sardis,died c. 180 C.E.).
In the Gospels in the parable of the sower (Luke viii, 7), we read that some of the seed (of spiritual principles and of salvation) fell amongst thorns and was choked. In the Old Testament (Genesis iii, 18) the Lord tells man that the earth will yield to him thorns and thistles.
The Tree of Jesse is often based on the acanthus.
Agriculture is often symbolised by a goddess.
This allegorical figure often carries a cornucopia full of fruits and flowers, or has both hands leaning on a spade or a hoe.
Ceres is represented with a plough and a plant bearing its first blossom.
The Zodiac is often included to indicate the importance of the yearly cycle and the sequence of the seasons and the work that each season implies.
Almond and the almond tree
A symbol of sweetness and delicacy.
The almond tree is one of the first trees to blossom, so it became the symbol of spring.
It is a Christian symbol of divine favour, from the flowering of Aaron's rod.
The rod of Joseph, husband of the Virgin, also flowered as a mark of divine favour, whence the almond became a symbol of the Virgin's purity.
In China the almond symbolizes feminine beauty and fortitude in grief.
In Greek mythology the anemone is the symbol of death and sorrow. The anemone sprouted from the spilled blood of Adonis.
We find the same symbolism in medieval tradition. Anemones sprouted from the blood of Christ on Calvary. In medieval painting we find anemones appear in paintings of the Crucifixion and of the Virgin of Sorrows.
Its (almost) spherical shape symbolises totality. earthly desires and indulgence in such desires.
The best known story is the warning not to eat the forbidden apple (from Eve to Snow-white). In fact it is a warning against the exaltation of materialistic desire (15).
In Christian art, the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge, plucked by Eve is a symbol of the Fall;
An apple held by the infant Christ alludes to the doctrine of Redemption
In Greek myth the apple of discord was thrown into the banquet of the gods and later awarded by Paris to Aphrodite (Venus) whose attribute it is; also of her attendants the three graces.
The golden apples of the Hesperides symbolize immortality, and are an attribute of Hercules.
In China wild apple blossom denotes female beauty.
In Chinese decoration art an apricot means beauty, beautyful woman, spring and good fortune
In Chinese ceramic decoration a leaf of artemisia is one of the eight treasures and is a symbol of joy.