Looks prickly. I suspect the name of the plant means something to you, but I don’t know enough botany to track it down.
Growing things, sharpness, potentiality….
If you click on the picture, it says “thistle in crete” at the top of the window.
“Thistle is an old English name, essentially the same in all languages, for a large group of plants with a dubious reputation. In ancient history the thistle represented part of the primeval curse on the earth in general, and on man in particular. In Greek history Earth made the thistle in a moment of grief for the loss of Daphnis, shepherd and musician, poet and hunter. ”
A search online turned up a number of associations, but I thought the above most likely for a Cretan thistle, though there was another connection somewhere with Dionysos. Given the way this story has been going, the thistle is more likely to have a mythic than a mundane meaning. Thistles aren’t actually that bad as plants, but they are seen to grow where they shouldn’t and take up room in fields.
Ancient curses on the earth — a definite possibility. Making the thistle as an expression of grief? Another possibility, given the way things, gods and people are created in Hitherby. I’m unused to thinking symbolically with fauna; I’ll have to come back to this.
The symbolic meanings of plants are a significant element in Rebecca’s game Nobilis.
Googling for websites on the language of flowers reveals that the Victorians had no consensus on the meaning of thistles: “aggressiveness,” “defiance,” “defense not defiance,” “misanthropy,” “hardihood,” “retaliation,” and a half-dozen other possibilities come up. I couldn’t find a meaning specific to Cretan thistle (if there is a variety by that name).
I don’t have time to hit the library today and look for offline data on floriography, alas.
I had a dream last night in which the Doctor from the BBC’s new Doctor Who series was identified with Ink Catherly. I remember these sentences:
“The Doctor is the limen, the smith, the threshing wind. Many who call her do not survive.”
Little bit of Martin getting in there too, yep.
I suspect that having a cold with fever had some role in it.
I know that flower language is big in Nobilis, but not having anybody to play games with anymore, I haven’t had the heart to read the entire book. It’s too beautiful and it makes me want to play. So I haven’t read or memorized everything, though I did read all the bits of fiction.
I’m not sure if Victorian-era symbology is the way to go here. I’d pin my hopes more on the Greek mythos if I was researching, because of the word “Crete” and the Greek characters who currently figure heavily in Nobilis. Of course, the thistle here may also represent a private symbolic language, but then doesn’t everything?
. I couldn’t find a meaning specific to Cretan thistle (if there is a variety by that name). I don’t have time to hit the library today and look for offline data on floriography, alas.
Good research on Victorians! I don’t have time, either; besides, I enjoy making things up. I did find in a hasty Google search that Greece does have thistles, though I couldn’t tell if there was a specific Greek variety, though I suspect there are several.
Thistles are related in some way to artichokes. Artichokes have hearts, so maybe thistles do too. But unless you take a bud like this one apart (which I havenâ€™t), itâ€™s rather hard to say one way or the other.
And some of them are perennials, for what itâ€™s worth.
Wow. A picture of a thistle gets eight comments. (Nine, now.) That’s kinda neat. And freaky! ^_^
You must be logged in to post a comment.