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William Morris & Co. and John Henry Dearle


Daffodils, That come before the swallow dares, and take The winds of March with beauty.
~William Shakespeare, The Winter's Tale

Daffodil Variations

William Morris & Co., John Henry Dearle

William Morris & Co. Daffodil swatch, 1900-1910.

Daffodil variations from Morris & Co. swatch book, 1900-1910 (V&A). Daffodil is probably the work of John Henry Dearle.

The daffodil has several names: daffodil, narcissus, asphodel. The word daffodil made its appearance in the middle ages, roughly about 1500. Its earlier name was affodyle, from the Old English Affo dyle -- that which comes early. Daffodils often make their appearance around the spring equinox, March 21.

Daffodil Mythology

In Greek mythology, the daffodil makes two appearances: The well-known Myth of Echo and Narcissus and in the Myth of Perephone.

Persephone had wandered into asphodel-covered meadows that Homer tells us are where the souls of the dead wander. She strayed from her companions to pick daffodils and was abducted by Hades. When Persephone returns in the spring bringing warmth and longer days, she wears a crown of daffodils.

Pliny and Theosophilus tell us that daffodils grew on the banks of the Acheron in the Underworld, bringing beauty and delight to the souls there.

Available Daffodil Tile Variations

William Morris, John Henry Dearle: Daffodil in blue



William Morris, John Henry Dearle: Daffodil in green



William Morris, John Henry Dearle: Daffodil original colorway



William Morris, John Henry Dearle: Daffodil in mauve and earth



Daffodils are also considered lucky. If you want to give daffodils to a friend, always give a bunch. A single daffodil brings a year of penury and want.

Daffodil Tile

Title: Morris & Co. Daffodil

Designer: John Henry Dearle

Tile: Ceramic

Single Tile: 4.25 inches and 6 inches

Availability: Daffodil can be shipped fairly quickly, usually within a week to ten days.

Daffodil Tile Pricing

4.25 inch square tiles: $54 each

6 inch square tiles: $63 each



    She wore her yellow sun-bonnet,
    She wore her greenest gown;
    She turned to the south wind
    And curtsied up and down.
    She turned to the sunlight
    And shook her yellow head,
    And whispered to her neighbor:
    "Winter is dead."

    ~A.A. Milne, When We Were Young


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