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That come before the swallow dares, and take
The winds of March with beauty.
~William Shakespeare, The Winter's Tale
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.
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.
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.
Title: Morris & Co. Daffodil
Designer: John Henry Dearle
Single Tile: 4.25 inches and 6 inches
Availability: Daffodil can be shipped fairly quickly, usually within a week to ten days.
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