In Greek mythology, Hyacinth was a beautiful and athletic youth who had admirers amongst the Gods. Two gods in particular, Apollo and Zephyrus (the god of wind) were particularly smitten with him. Hyacinth showed a preference for Apollo, leaving Zephyrus none-too-happy. One day, while Hyacinth and Apollo were tossing the discus, Zephyrus blew his wind upon the disk—which sent it off-course, killing the young man. A grieving Apollo prevented Hades (the god of the underworld) from claiming his beloved. Instead, Apollo transformed Hyacinth’s spots of spilled blood into the flowers we know by that name today.
Hyacinths grow from bulbs and were indigenous to the Eastern Mediterranean, from southern Turkey through Syria, Lebanon, Israel, Jordan, Iran, Iraq, and, of course, Greece. Since the 18th Century, they have also been widely cultivated in Holland. Because the bulbs re-bloom each year, the flower is sometimes associated with re-birth.
The greeting card, pictured above, was printed in England. Over the next several days, we’ll celebrate Easter Week with selections from our newly-received collection of Spring greeting cards.