Catholic CornucopiadCheney

Letter D

The Catholic Language of Flowers


(Narcissus pseudo-narcissus: Nat. Order, Amaryllidaceæ)

The Daffodil seems foolishly to raise its head above the other flowers. but the first wind that blows, scatters its yellow petals in the dust. May it not be compared to those who, while fortune smiles on them, think themselves superior to their fellow-creatures, but who, when the blast of misfortune comes, have not fortitude to endure it, and weakly fall beneath its influence?


(Dahlia: Nat. Order, Compositæ)

Christian maidens, who gaze on my bright flowers, which, in the declining year, adorn your gardens, reflect that like those flowers, will your youth and beauty pass away; and that your best and most precious ornaments are those which should deck the garden of your souls.


(Bellis perennis: Nat. Order, Compositæ)

The Daisy has always been chosen as an emblem of simplicity and innocence.
    Malvina, the wife of one of the Irish kings, was deprived by death of a lovely child. Bitterly the mother mourned over her bereavement; but she was consoled by a vision, in which she saw angels crowning her child with daisies, to denote how pleasing simplicity is in the eyes of God.


(Funkia: Nat. Order, Hemerocallidæ)

The Day-lily, though a beautiful flower, is but short-lived, and as the sun sinks in the west, it begins to fade, closes its petals, and dies. It is an emblem of fragility, and teaches us to reflect how fleeting are the charms of personal beauty, and how vain and transient is the happiness which we build upon this changeful world.

Deadly Nightshade,—Sin

(Atropa belladonna: Nat. Order, Solanaceæ)

The fruit of the Deadly Nightshade looks fair and pleasing to the eye; but it is death to the unsuspecting child who is tempted to taste its fatal berry. So does sin, of which it is the emblem, conceal itself beneath the glitter of pleasure, and instil its subtle poison into the heart of man, destroying the beauty of those souls which it cost the blood of Jesus to redeem.


(Lamium: Nat. Order, Labiatæ)

The Dead-Nettle is the emblem of idleness; for, without fragrance or useful properties, it seems to exist only for itself, like indolent persons, who think only of themselves, and contribute not to the welfare or happiness of those by whom they are surrounded.