Share Tweet

The Daffodil Myths, Legends and Old Tales. Here’s Some Folklores, and Symbolic Meanings of the Easter Daffodil.

February 19, 2008
 The Daffodil has many myths, legends and is the leading flower in many old tales. Here's some folklores, faux pas, omens, and symbolic meanings associated with the Easter Daffodil.

A little yellow cup,

A little yellow frill,

A little yellow star,

And that's a daffodil.

Author Unknown.

The Daffodil is said to be originated in the Mediterranean, and first came to England as a gift by the Romans, who had believed the Daffodil sap had healing properties. Probably through "Lost in Translation", the concept was quickly found out to be in error, as the tiny crystals emitted by a Daffodil protects the flower from unwanted predators, but it did succeeded in making the Romans very itchy.

Throughout the centuries the Daffodil gained it's fame in many different countries and cultures. Easter being the celebration of rebirth, and the return of spring by many cultures, had initiated the flower to be associated with it's early spring bloom. The Daffodil is the birthday flower of March, the same month as the spring equinox, which brings great celebration to the return of spring.

It is said the Daffodil also first bloomed during the time of Christs Resurrection, and the Christian faith holds the flower in high regard as an Easter symbol. The legend says the Daffodil first appeared in the Garden of Gethsemane, during the happening of Christ's The Last Supper, it was a sign of great sorrow, and hope for better things to come. According to stories passed down throughout the generations, Lent, the 40 days of fasting, prior to Easter Sunday, the Lenten Lilly is the symbolic flower used by Christians to proclaim their respect of the Resurrection.

Let's take a brief glimpse into the Daffodil, and see how it is regarded as the myths, folklore, and omens began and have been told throughout the ages, and around the world.

The significance of the Daffodil in other Countries.

In Greece, the Daffodil is known as narcissus. Narcissus tazetta, is called Little Tear Drops.

In Germany, daffodils are called Osterglocken, Easter bells.

In England they are known as Lent Lilies. Daffodils are the most popular Easter Flower for decorations for center pieces for Easter Dinners, and decorating.

In England as tradition, Prince Charles is paid the sum of one annual daffodil as a considered rent payment for the unattended lands of the Isles of Scilly.

In Wales the national emblem is the Leek, however, the Daffodil is also used as a symbolic flower for Wales. The Welsh word for leek is Cenhinen, and Daffodil is Cenhinen Pedr, known as Peter's leek. As time passed the two often were confused, so the daffodil along with the leek was adopted as the emblems, and buttons marking of Wales on Saint David's Day. They also say the bloom of daffodils and the birth of lambs is the sign of spring in Wales.

The daffodil was accepted by the Druids as their national flower, symbolizing purity.

In Persai, they use Daffodils for Nawruz, their New Year.

In China the Daffodil has been used to decorate for the Chinese New Year.

The Arabians used this flower as an aphrodisiac.

Medieval Arabs used the juice of the walk daffodil as a cure for baldness.

The Egyptians often hung wreaths of narcissus during funerals.

In Italy they have their own myth of the daffodil, and it is in the Legend of Zita.

Foklores of the Daffodil.

Please don't step on the Daffodils.

Tread with caution when walking around a bed of daffodils. If you step, stomp, or trample on a bed of Daffodils, bad luck will find you.

If you make a great effort to avoid stepping on a Daffodil, you will be rewarded good fortune.

Be Generous when Giving Daffodils as a gift.

It is bad luck to bring in a single Daffodil, misfortune will fall upon the house. Always bring a bouquet filled, if you intend to give Daffodils as a present, this will bring good fortune to the house.

It is bad luck to be confined with a bloomed daffodil, the scent will bring on a migraine.

The State of Maine, USA has a superstition about the daffodil. The daffodil when pointed at with the index finger, will not bloom.

As a Welsh tradition. The First Daffodil of Spring brings good fortune. Due to the bright yellow color, the first sighter can expect good fortune, brining in more gold then silver for the following 12 months.

In Medieval times it was believed that if a Daffodil drooped or wilted while you were watching, it was an omen of death.

Another Old English folklore says, when you have poultry nesting on eggs, don't bring Daffodils over the threshold. It was believed that the Daffodils would bring bad luck to the poultry who lay eggs, and the eggs would not hatch.

Apparently not all English agreed, as some believed the opposite.

It was good luck to bring the first bouquet of daffodils in spring over the threshold, and for every flower brought in, a gosling would hatch strong and healthy.

As a Chinese lore, the daffodil which is groomed to bloom on the Chinese New Year will bring good fortune for the next twelve months.

Daffodil name arrived in the English language around the 1500's.

The old name for daffodil was Affodyle, Affodyle means that which cometh early.

The Dutch word de affodil, is said to be the origin of the word deriving from Greek mythology of the asphodel. The Greek associated the asphodel flower with death. The asphodel blossomed over the meadows, where the souls of the dead wandered. 

Roman Legend of the daffodil.

The Roman soldiers were said to have among other items in their sack, a sachet of daffodil bulbs. If they fell to fatality, they would eat the bulb of the daffodil, to die with mercy. The bulb has narcotic toxic  properties, and the soldier's pain would numb until his death.

Greek Myth

A love story about a young wood nymph, her name was Echo, and her heart was stolen by the dashing Narcissus. He was blessed by the Gods, with great beauty. The God's bestowed a wonderful gift, Narcissus was blessed with eternal beauty, and youth, but on one condition, he was forbidden to look upon his own reflection.

In his vanity, his returned affection to the nymph Echo was so powerful, that he consumed her very being. With an over powering love, she faded away to a mere echo of herself. Because of this happening, the daffodil became the symbol for unreturned love.

Now this angered the Goddess Nemesis, she was the Goddess of punishment and vengeance, she lured the unremorseful Narcissus to a crystal clear lake by a mountainside, where his reflection was spotted by Narcissus. The spell of his beauty was cast upon him, and he was lost in his own endearing reflection. When he reached down to touch his reflection on the water, it caused a ripple, and his image would disappear. It is said that this filled Narcissus with melancholy, and he simply remained, starring at his reflection.

The Gods who bestowed the great gift onto Narcissus, feared that he would parish if he remained any longer by the river bank, trapped by the spell of his own beauty. Out of mercy, they turned him into a scented flower, which today still blooms every spring in the mountains, and is still known as the Narcissus.

They say the drooping of the daffodil symbolizes the image of Narcissus bowing his head, admiring his image in he lake. It is said that the center of the daffodil is a cup that is filled with the tears of Narcissus, and the flower is a symbol of vanity, conceit, and unrequited love.

It is considered bad luck for a Bride to hold, or be given a daffodil on her Wedding Day, as it represents unhappiness, sorrow, lost love, and vanity.

Narcissus is another name for the daffodil meaning of narcissism. It is said to come from the word narke. The ancient Greek word for deep sleep, stupor or numbness. Narke is the root word for narcotic. Which might explain why the Roman soldiers used the bulb of the daffodil as a means to a end, it is said to have alkaloid paralysing properties in the narcissi bulb.

A Saint's Legend about the daffodil

This legend is based on Saint Francis. He was a nature lover, whose best friend was a rabbit. All the animals in the forest loved Saint Francis and gave him a gift, a nest full of brightly colored eggs. The rabbit had asked the daffodil for it's brilliant yellow color, the crocus for it's blue, and violet for the purple. Saint Francis was so overwhelmed with joy, in receiving such a lovely present that he proclaimed that from now and forever, every year a basket full of colored eggs would return in memory of the first Easter Rabbit.

Give a Daffodil to the one you love.

For a lady to give a man a daffodil, it denotes her insight to his chivalrous manner.

The sunny yellow glow of a daffodil tells the one you love that their sunny smile brightens your day.

To give a daffodil to your sweetheart it is a sign of love, hope, joy, through respect.

Daffodil's are the floral symbol from the Cancer Society, standing for love, hope through the joy of sunshine.
For a few more interesting facts about Easter, why not check out my article, 
That's All Folks.
Happy Easter
By: Sacreeta
25,788 - 56 - 1 - US
Sacreeta Veneficus has been a dedicated writer since 2006, writing nearly 200 articles on Search Warp and has built her way to up over 2 million readers by June 2013. She is an eBook Author under the writer's name of Willow Fae von Wicken, on Amazon, for Kindle and Ipod.

Her first published Novel:

Due to changes at Search Warp, Sacreeta will no longer be able to receive or respond to comments. If you need her advice, ask her on Twitter. @Sacreeta

She would welcome new followers, and be eager to help where she can.


To learn more about Sacreeta go to

Sacreeta is a Fan of

Popular Today

Other Articles