Laurel flower tattoos are a symbol of triumph, victory and success. Laurel is Apollo’s emblem – the Greek god of sun, poetry and music. Nymph Daphna pursued by enamored god Apollo and she turned into a laurel bush in the god’s and the god decorated his head and lyre by the laurel branches. On Olympic Games in Apollo’s honor, which included competitions, both in athletics and arts, the winners crowned with laurel wreaths.
The epithet “poet-laureate” goes back to the ancient belief that the laurels is able to inspire. In the portrait painting the laurel bush or branch specifies that the model concerns to the literature or art.
Romans have extended the tradition of rewarding by laurel wreath – the soldiers-winners. So, Julius Caesar put on the laurel wreath on all official ceremonies, and on English coins Charles I, George I and George II, after a while and Elizabeth II also were represented with laurel wreaths. As the symbol of superiority the laurel branches were represented in the emblems of such automobile companies, as “Alpha-romeo”, “Fiat” and “Mercedes”.
Being an evergreen tree, the laurels also symbolise immortality. In this quality the laurel grove grows on the top of Parnassus – the dwellings of muses. The laurel bush was the Lorenzo Medici’s emblem (1448-1492) with the motto «Such virtue», underlining that virtue does not wither so as the evergreen laurel.
In ancient world the laurel was considered as a protecting plant, and the laurel branch was used as a sprayer in the Roman sacrificial ceremonies.
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