We all know that the lavender flower is extracted into essential oil to be poured in air humidifiers to make the room a little calmer, soothing and tranquil. But beyond this, there is a whole new and deep meaning associated with the lavender flower; meanings that are not so much talked about because we are seeing it for its key functions only. It is easy to be enamored with the lavender but you will love it more if you know the lavender flower meaning so read on.
Lavender flower fun facts
Before we get serious and profound with the lavender flower meaning, we should know it first from a factual point of view. There will always be one or two things that we will never know about anything so these are some fun facts about the lavender flower.
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- It is a survivor. It can thrive in soil conditions.
- It is clustered under the mint family and is a potent insect, mosquito and bug repellant.
- Because of its distinct, refreshing scent, lavender flowers are dried and are common ingredients in indoor potpourris.
- Bees that feed on lavender nectar are said to produce more tasty honey.
- Lavender flowers cannot be propagated through seeds.
- Lavender oil from its flowers are good in treating muscle pain and in inducing sleep (since Ancient Greece and Egypt actually).
Related: How to grow lavender
What does the name Lavender mean?
The name Lavender is very rare (ranked as 1,950th name in the list of baby names by the way), and is a neutral name for baby boys and girls. If you are familiar with Roald Dahl’s Matilda, you would know that Lavender was the name of her best friend. Potterheads also know of Lavender Brown, a good teenage witch in the Harry Potter series. And although there are no exact meanings for Lavender as a name, both characters mentioned exude calmness in their personalities, came from regal lineages and are very devoted and noble in their own rights. The name is also associated with girls’ names Violet and Lilac.
Lavender flower meaning
Lavender flower meaning revolves around its natural function: that of calmness and tranquility. As such, the lavender flower signifies calmness, serenity and silence. Along these lines, lavender flowers also stand for purity, devotion and grace. It is also said that the lavender flower is given to stand for caution on some things.
Etymological meaning of Lavender
Although its scientific name is Lavandula, the lavender traces its etymological meaning from the Latin word lavare and the Old French word lavender, both of which means ‘to wash’. It is said that these now defunct words were the words the scientific name of the lavender came from. But in the nick of time, it was mentioned that it could have also been derived from another Latin word livere which means bluish.
What does Lavender mean in the Bible?
The lavender flower is referenced more than a hundred times in the bible by the name of spikenard or nard, the name given to the lavender by Hebrews (and also of the Greeks afterwards). In all of the mentions in the bible, the lavender is used for purification rituals, for healing, and used as oils and perfumes by high priests and nobilities. It was used in anointing the feet of Jesus by Mary Magdalene. It was used to anoint Simon the leper and was immortalized in a poem of love in the Song of Solomon.
Lavender meaning in different cultures and religions
The lavender flower dates back to as far as ancient Greece and Egypt so it should not be surprising that it is meaningful or symbolic in many cultures and religions. In ancient Greece, lavender signified strong connection to the unknown, gods and goddesses and the afterlife. It is usually burnt in temples and shrines. For the Roman empire, lavender flowers were symbols of aristocracy and nobility as they were only afforded by the rich. As a matter of fact, it was only seen in royalties’ bedrooms, bathrooms and parlors.In modern contexts, it also became a symbol of caution especially for Western cultures. It is given to friends and family who might be off the edge, caught in confusing decisions or have questionable ones. In Eastern cultures, it signifies the want for serenity, silence and also of luck and fortune.
Lavender tattoo meaning
When inked as a tattoo, the lavender flower means healing and letting the calm settle in one’s life. It is a powerful message for people who have just been in the downward spiral but did not allow the adversities of life and their problems to rub the easy way out option in their faces. This is also powerful for people who are drawn to calmness and the practice of it such as yoga practitioners and instructors.
Lavender flower color meanings
While other flowers have a lot of colors with various meanings, strikingly, the lavender only has one: the purple color. This color does not only mean calmness and serenity but also of power, nobility and a symbol of spirituality. The unchanging, shades of purple in one flower like that of the lavender makes it significant in many religious rituals and also a symbol of spirituality.
Symbolism of the Lavender flower
One of its famous symbolisms is along the yoga and meditation. In some versions of the chakra system, the lavender is seen to be designated in the crown chakra. This is considered as the center of a person’s energy where cosmic connection and higher purpose are activated. And since the lavender is all about serenity and purity, it is a good symbolism as it signifies healing and consciousness. It is also used in baptism and weddings because lavenders symbolize purity, innocence and devotion. In aroma therapy, the symbol of lavender means calmness and serenity. And as it symbolizes peace, it is used to get rid of negative energy and to aid people who are depressed. This is done in many ways like using it as tea, infusing lavender oils in humidifiers and in putting it in potpourris. As a matter of fact, there is a code lavender in hospitals which means that hospital staff should engage into self-care to alleviate the stress after treating code blue patients.
Message of the Lavender flower
Given the symbolisms of the lavender flower, the ultimate message of this flower is being serene and graceful enough to accept all the changes that come with life. With this, its message is also that of refinement and devotion. Above all, when put inside the home, it does not only gravitate towards calmness and serenity but also nobility, power and happiness. It is striking however, that one message of the lavender is also caution. It means that as people, we must not misconstrue our passions or else they will turn into disappointments and endless frustrations. It could also mean, as a warning, that we have to always be grounded and discriminating when it comes to choices that might seem too good to be true. All in all, the message of the lavender flower is consistent: serenity, the calm and peace reveal to us many facets of life that will bring us towards consciousness, connection and purpose.
Uses of Lavender flower
It is pretty much one of the most organically functional flowers out there tracing its benefits to as far as ancient Greece and pharaonic Egypt. For example, ancient Greeks used lavender flowers for medical purposes, extracting its oil to treat back pains, muscle pains and insomnia. For the ancient Egyptians, the lavender flower was used in the intricate process of mummification, using it for embalming because of its fragrance. In the 17th century, lavender flowers were turned to alcohol and were used by European physicians as an early remedy to increase immunity to the then Bubonic plague. World War II hospitals did the same. Like the dahlia, lavender flowers were also personal favorites of Queen Victoria, commanding her court to brew them for tea, for her bath and to make lavender-based solutions to clean furniture, china and for washing linen. A thousand years later and the lavender flowers are still used for the same herbal purpose: for muscle pains and insomnia because of its calming and soothing effect. In addition to that, it is also a potent repellent for bugs, mosquitoes and other insects. It is also used in pastries and lemonades. And since it is easy to grow and maintain, it always makes a good garden bedding flower.
To conclude, the lavender flower is as meaningful as it is functional. Distinctly so, the meanings associated with it are highly connected with what it has come to be as a powerful plant and herb. Needless to say, this is the reason why we know of it as a flower that evokes calm, peace and tranquility. But more than that, it is also one that represents nobility, power, devotion, purity, healing and a deep connection with spirituality. These range of meanings could account for themselves in history, across cultures and also in religion, particularly biblical texts. If there is a flower whose meaning is super consistent, it would be the lavender.