Romance and Weeds
Wednesday, 12 August 2015 14:14:23 Europe/London
How are we almost halfway through August already (and when is somebody going to alert the sun to this)? Before we know it, the kids/grandkids will be back at school and there will be more time for crafting again, hurrah!
Since August is apparently Romance Awareness Month it seems only right to draw your attention to a couple of perennial favourites in jewellery design, namely hearts and flowers. It doesn’t seem to matter how many we bring you, they’re always top-sellers. I did get slightly distracted by reading about the Anglo-Saxon name for August, which was Weod monath. This translates as weed month – because August is the time when weeds grow most rapidly! None of your frilly romantic nonsense for the Anglo-Saxons then presumably.
What we know as a heart shape has symbolised love and romance for centuries, it seems there are several theories as to how the shape came about though. Some feel that it’s simply an attempt to draw an actual human heart, hampered somewhat by the limited anatomical knowledge of the time! Others believe it was based on the seedpod of the now-extinct Silphium plant, once found in North Africa. Mostly used as a seasoning it was also believed to have contraceptive properties, the Cyrene economy depended so strongly on it that its shape was depicted on their coinage.
Moving from plants to flowers, most of you will no doubt be aware that flowers have been given as tokens of love for a very long time. There are records of it in Egyptian hieroglyphics and it’s mentioned in ancient Chinese writings, as well as in both Greek and Roman mythology. In the Middle Ages, when public displays of affection were not tolerated, the practice of giving flowers flourished as a way of conveying emotions. Different meanings were attached to different blooms; this was taken a step further in the Victorian era when books were published showing how to arrange them in order to send the right message!
Should my husband be reading this, I’d like to reassure you that there’s no need to worry about sending the wrong message – feel free to send the flowers! Or the heart-shaped chocolates. A Twix would do at a push!