Posts Tagged ‘Easter lily’

Lilies for Easter

The Easter Lily 

The Easter Lily, also known by its Latin name Lilium longiflorum, has become the traditional Easter flower. With all the different flowers available in the spring garden, it is this beautiful white flower that has come to symbolize the spiritual values of Easter: purity, life and renewal. The flower’s trumpet shape is a reminder of the heralding of Jesus, returning triumphant to Jerusalem.

The Easter Connection

According to Biblical scholars, the Easter Lily was found growing in the Garden of Gethsemane where Judas is said to have betrayed Jesus. Legend tells that white lilies miraculously sprung up from the ground where drops of Jesus’ sweat and tears fell during his last hours.  The Easter Lily also has close associations with Jesus’ mother, the Virgin Mary. In early religious paintings, the Archangel Gabriel is pictured extending a branch of white lilies to Mary, symbolizing that she had become the virgin mother to the savior.    Today, many churches use large bouquets of lilies to adorn their altars and crosses during the Easter season.               – from holiday.net

Lilies were always a big part of Easter celebrations when I was a child – our church used those big white ones all over the sanctuary, and sometimes my mother would have one in the house – and the church we attended previously used them near the pulpit.  You could donate an Easter lily in honor or in remembrance of loved ones, and there they’d be on Easter morning, lined up on the dais and on the rail in front of the choir loft, trumpeting fragrance in dizzying waves.  They smelled wonderful, but every Easter Sunday, I’d be sniffly and unable to breathe by halfway through the service, with three dozen lilies all clustered less than ten feet from my face.

The church we attend now is different.  For one thing, we meet  in the middle school auditorium because we don’t have a building.  For another, dress is very casual; it’s common for people to show up in jeans.  I’m singing with the praise band, and I’ll probably wind up wearing jeans along with all of them.  In some ways I miss having a new Easter dress and an orchid corsage, the way I always had as a kid.   I miss not singing “Jesus Christ Is Risen Today.”  And I do miss those lilies, symbols of purity and joy and new life, pollen machines or not.

I’ll be wearing the smell of lilies, in any case, and thinking about purity and joy and new life.  Lily perfumes never make me sneeze, and I never associate lilies with funerals.  No, for me lilies are Easter.

There are some lovely fragrances featuring lilies – here’s a short list of soliflores and lily-centered scents:

Serge Lutens Un Lys – Lovely soliflore.  Notes: lily, vanilla, musk.   It’s pretty but doesn’t make any emotional impact on me.  Robin of Now Smell This likes it much better than I do: her review is here.  Victoria of Bois de Jasmin reviews it here

Frederic Malle Lys Mediterranee – This is beautiful; it’s mostly lilies, but with a waft of salty breeze, and a hint of floral aqueousness from water lily.  I have a sample that I enjoy very much.  Notes: sea water, ginger, lily, angelica, orange blossom, lotus, vanilla, musk.  Bois de Jasmin review here.   Review of several lily scents, including Lys Mediterranee, by Marina of Perfume-Smellin’ Things here.

Donna Karan Gold – This is what I’ll wear.  It’s discontinued (what a shame!), and I got my 1oz bottle of edp on ebay for $8.  Notes: lily, acacia, cloves, jasmine, amber, patchouli.  Very spicy, yet satiny-cool.  Robin at NST reviews it here, and Victoria of BdJ here.  Also, For the Love of Perfume here.

Cynthia Rowley (for Avon) Flower – Notes: freesia, citrus, violet leaf, lily, water lily, jasmine, cashmere wood, vanilla, sandalwood.  I have a small bottle of this.  It is pretty, and higher-pitched than many of the other scents on the list.  Like many of the Avon scents (I grew up on them), it does smell a bit cheap.  Having said that, I think this would be a terrific scent for a young girl.  No blog reviews available.

Annick Goutal Des Lys – I have not smelled this limited edition scent, but I am sure it’s just as uncomplicatedly pretty as the other scents in the Goutal soliflore line.  Notes: lily, ivy, cassis.  Angela at Now Smell This reviewed this scent, here.

Van Cleef & Arpels Collection Extraordinaire Lys Carmin –   Notes: cinnamon, pink pepper, lily.  Review from Patty of Perfume Posse here and from March at PP, here

Cacharel Anais Anais – I haven’t smelled this in years, but my mother used to wear it.  It’s a rich composition, but clean-smelling and focused on lily.  Notes: galbanum, citruses, honeysuckle, lavender, orange blossom, hyacinth, black currant, lily, jasmine, carnation, tuberose, ylang-ylang, lily of the valley, rose, leather, sandalwood, amber, patchouli, musk, oakmoss, vetiver, incense, cedar.  Reviews here:  Donna at PST, Brian at I Smell Therefore I Am.

Tocca Stella – Another composition I haven’t smelled.  Described as being mostly citrus-lily in reviews on fragrance forums.  Notes:  orange, freesia, lily, orchid, sandalwood, musk.  Reviews:  Victoria’s Own, Blogdorf Goodman.

I wish you a wonderful, meaningful Easter: He is risen.  He is risen indeed. 

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