Monday, April 22, 2013

LOVE WITH MUGUET, MAY 1st (c) By Polly Guerin

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Convallaria Majalis, LILY OF THE VALLEY
Spring is in the air and if you are a Francophile you know that come May 1st it is time to show your love in true romantic French tradition by presenting your loved ones with a “Muguet,” bouquet of delicate, white bell-shaped flowers, commonly called “Lily of the Valley.” Other names include May lily, May bells and ladder-to-heaven but in the language of flowers, these sweetly scented bells signify the return to happiness. Lilys of the valley nod their pretty little bells and flower in late spring and give us an opportunity to remember those we love and cherish.

I LOVE THIS FRENCH TRADITION It is such a perfect way to welcome the Rites of Spring, when all is bursting into blossom, and new life appears revitalized with the song of birds and birth of baby animals. It's the time of year when our thoughts turn to beauty, love, caring and togetherness, precious moments to share together in world of peace and harmony. Lily of the Valley is the symbol of humility in religious paintings as it is considered to be the sign of Christ’s second coming. The lily of the valley has also been attributed to the power of men to envision a better world. Should we therefore perhaps take this opportunity to reinstate the Lily of the Valley as the symbol of peace loving nations? It should be made a worldwide tradition!

HISTORICAL LORE Muguet is also known as Our Lady’s Tears or Mary’s Tears since, according to Christian legend; the flower sprang from the weeping of the Virgin Mary during the crucifixion of Christ. The name “lily of the valley” is used in some English translations of the Bible in Song of Songs, 2:1, but the Hebrew phrase, “Shoshanna-ha-amaqim” in the original text (literally ‘lily of the valleys”) doesn’t refer to this plant, though the biblical phrase may have had something to do with the origin of the modern plant-name.

A WEDDING CHOICE The flower has become popular for wedding bouquets, albeit it can be expensive. Lily of the Valley was featured in the bridal bouquet at the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton and this set a trend for other brides who adopted the flower. Lily of the Valley has also been a tradition as decorative icing on wedding cakes and in prints on textiles. If the flower is not readily available where you live there is a plethora of products with the Lily of Valley theme and aroma; candles, bath and show gels and soaps, embroidered motif on towels and linens, and handkerchiefs are among the lovely symbols for May 1st gift-giving.

May the sweet scent of Muguet announce spring’s awakening with happiness in your heart and may it influence the power of men and women to envision a better world.

1 comment:

  1. Love the article, your interests and look forward to reading more. Thank you for your time and dedication to this blog.
    Respectfully
    Wendy Anderson
    Nova Scotia CAN

    ReplyDelete