The lily is one of the most spectacular flowers in the world. This spectacular flower is elegant and charming, and it is always a favorite with hobby gardeners and professional flower arrangers alike. Whether you grow your own lilies or just enjoy buying them, you might want to learn a bit about the history, symbolism and meaning of this iconic flower.


The lily is one of the oldest continuously cultivated decorative flowers in the world. Historians have found evidence of lily cultivation as early as 1580 B.C. Images of lilies were found in a villa in Crete, providing that these elegant flowers were symbols of refinement and good taste more than a thousand years before Christ walked the earth.


It is fitting that lilies were cultivated in Crete, since the flower holds a special place in ancient mythology and storytelling. The word lily is derived from the Greek word leiron. The Greeks in particular loved and revered the lily, so much so that they believed the flower grew from the milk of Hera, queen of the gods. The association with Greek mythology and mysticism is fitting for the lily, and it continues to enchant people even today.


Modern Day


The lily holds special meaning in the modern world as well. This spectacular blossom is the classic 30th anniversary flower, and it is often featured prominently in anniversary bouquets.


The lily is also the birth flower for the month of May. If you know someone who was born in May, a bouquet full of white or multicolored lilies makes the perfect gift.


White lilies are often used to symbolize chastity, and for that reason they are often an integral part of the bridal bouquet and church decorations. The connection between the white lily and purity is so strong that the flower is a symbol of the Virgin Mary – used to symbolize her role as the queen of the angels.


The white lily is not the only variety with its own special meaning. The white stargazer lily is often used to express sympathy and sadness, and it is frequently found in sympathy bouquets and funereal displays. The pink stargazer lily symbolizes wealth and prosperity, making it a fitting choice for housewarming parties, retirement celebrations and other special events.


The lily of the valley is another flower with its own special meaning. These elegant flowers are used to symbolize devotion and humility, making them the perfect choice for anniversary bouquets and centerpieces.


The connection between the lily of the valley and love and devotion is so strong that the lily of the valley is the official flower of second wedding anniversaries. If you and your spouse are getting ready to celebrate the big event, you might want to pick up a big bouquet on your way home from work.


Whether you give them as gifts, grow them in your home garden or just admire them from afar, there is plenty to love about the lily. Long a symbol of love and beauty, this elegant flower is always a favorite.

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