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The Beauty of the Calla Lily; The Meaning and History Behind the Calla Lily

Updated on January 19, 2015
Calla Lilies on Pink by Georgia O'Keeffe
Calla Lilies on Pink by Georgia O'Keeffe | Source

The calla lily has been my favorite flower ever since I was a little girl starting to dream about my wedding.I always thought its simplicity was what was beautiful about it. To me, roses are too complicated, daisies are sweet in their own way, carnations are ok, but calla lilies are elegant. They represent the simple beauty and elegance of women. It could be argued that all flowers can represent women in a way, but calla lilies show the refined side of women, while hinting at their soft, beautiful curves.

The most common color of the calla lily is white, but it can also be found in colors ranging from light pink, to bright yellow, to a dark purple-black. They are native to southern Africa but can grow in any type of soil as long as the climate is humid. One of the reasons they are so popular is because they last so long in a vase, so flower lovers can have beautiful calla lilies in their home for at least 7 days.

Calla Lilies
Calla Lilies | Source

The calla lily is both a beginning and an end. Representing rebirth and resurrection, it is a popular flower for funerals. However, it also represents purity and marriage making it popular for weddings as well. In the Victorian age, men and women used flowers as language in order to communicate without ruining one or the other's reputation, the calla lily in that age was used to convey ... desire.

The Roman legend of the flower is that Zeus had just fathered Herculese and wanted him to have divine powers. The only way to do that was to have him nurse from Hera, but she wouldn't do that so Zeus waited until she was asleep. When she woke up to find the baby nursing from her, she threw him across the room and according to the Romans her breast milk created the Milky Way and some drops of milk landed on Earth creating calla lilies. After that, Venus saw the lilies and became jealous so she cursed them causing the yellow pistil to grow from the center of the flower.

Birth of Venus
Birth of Venus | Source

I am a firm believer that each and every different thing has a different meaning to each and every different person. What do calla lilies mean to you?


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