Discovering the Meaning: What Does the Amaryllis Flower Symbolize?

As the holiday season approaches, the amaryllis flower takes center stage as a popular gift and decoration. But beyond its attractive appearance, this flower has a deep symbolism rooted in history. The amaryllis has been a source of fascination for centuries, capturing the hearts and imaginations of people all around the world. It’s a flower that holds a unique place in the history of mythology and literature, making it a popular choice for those who appreciate the rich cultural symbolism of the natural world.

The amaryllis flower is known to symbolize various qualities depending on the culture and context. In Greek mythology, the flower is associated with pride, honor, and determination – qualities that are embodied in the story of a young woman named Amaryllis who fell in love with a shepherd and would go to great lengths to get his attention. In Christian traditions, the amaryllis is often associated with the blood of Christ, symbolizing resurrection and rebirth. For some, the flower is also associated with purity, strength, and passion – qualities that make it a popular choice for holiday decorations and gifts.

Whether it’s used as a symbol of love, hope, or religious devotion, the amaryllis flower has a rich cultural history that continues to captivate people of all ages. This flower has a timeless appeal that makes it a favorite among gardeners and flower enthusiasts alike. So, as you admire the beauty of the amaryllis flower this holiday season, take a moment to appreciate the unique symbolism that this ancient flower holds and the various interpretations it inspires.

History and Origins of the Amaryllis Flower Symbolism

The amaryllis flower is a stunning beauty that has been used in different cultures throughout history due to its symbolic meaning. The word “amaryllis” is derived from the Greek word “amaryssein,” which means “to sparkle.” The flower is believed to have originated in South Africa and South America but has now spread to different parts of the world, including Europe and Asia. The symbolism of the amaryllis flower can be traced back to ancient mythology.

  • The ancient Greeks believed that Eros, the god of love, shot an arrow at a beautiful nymph named Amaryllis, who then became so enamored with Alteo, a shepherd, that she pierced her heart with a golden arrow to prove her love. As her blood fell to the ground, it turned into the stunning, red amaryllis flower.
  • In Christianity, the amaryllis flower is also associated with the Virgin Mary’s immaculate conception. It is believed to represent Mary’s purity and virginity.
  • In the Victorian era, amaryllis symbolized pride and vanity. People believed that individuals gifted with an amaryllis flower were proud of their beauty and wished to showcase it to the world.

Overall, the amaryllis flower has had a deep-rooted association with love, beauty, and pride throughout history. Different cultures and traditions view the flower in different ways, but its beauty and symbolism remain universal.

Mythological significance of the Amaryllis

The Amaryllis flower has a captivating history associated with mythology. The name, “amaryllis,” is derived from the Greek word “amarullis” which literally means “to sparkle.” The flower symbolizes different meanings in various mythologies, making it an intriguing subject of interest for many people.

  • In Greek mythology, the Amaryllis flower is believed to symbolize pure love. Legend has it that a beautiful maiden named Amaryllis fell in love with a shepherd named Alteo. She went to great lengths to prove her love, but he was too stubborn to pay her any attention. In desperation, she pierced her heart with a golden arrow, which subsequently sprouted the stunning Amaryllis flower. This act demonstrated her deep love and devotion for Alteo.
  • According to Roman mythology, the Amaryllis flower originated from the blood of a love-struck shepherdess. The story goes that the shepherdess, who deeply loved a Roman god named Alteo, visited an oracle seeking guidance on how to win his heart. The oracle instructed her to pierce her heart with a golden arrow and walk to the doorstep of Alteo for 30 consecutive nights. Each night, a beautiful Amaryllis flower sprouted from the blood that fell onto the ground, and by the 30th night, Alteo finally fell in love with her.
  • Another mythological tale originates from South Africa, where the Amaryllis flower is known as “Kabouter.” According to folklore, a group of Kabouter fairies awakened on Christmas Eve to a beautiful sight – the world was covered in a blanket of white snow. To show their gratitude, the fairies tied a red ribbon around the stem of an Amaryllis flower and placed it on every doorstep they came across. They believed that the red ribbon would bring good luck and prosperity to all those who received it.

Amaryllis Symbolism

The table below illustrates the different meanings associated with the Amaryllis flower:

Symbolism Meaning
Love The Amaryllis flower is often associated with deep and pure love, often making it a popular choice for weddings and anniversaries.
Strength and determination The striking Amaryllis flower’s resilience and ability to bloom in the midst of winter, signify strength and determination.
Success The Amaryllis flower is believed to bring good fortune, prosperity, and success, particularly in business ventures.

The Amaryllis flower’s symbolism varies, depending on the culture, but what remains constant is its beauty, strength, and ability to signify love, prosperity, and good luck. As a result, it is a flower that is highly coveted, not just for its beauty but also for the messages it conveys.

Religious symbolism of the Amaryllis

The Amaryllis flower has several religious connotations. Its exquisite beauty has been a part of many legends and stories throughout history. In ancient times, the Amaryllis was associated with the Greek god and goddess Hercules and Aphrodite, respectively. Legend has it that the Amaryllis was created by the blood of Hercules’s lover, which was spilled when he killed himself. The blood flowed into the ground and created a beautiful flower that was named after the girl, Amaryllis.

In Christian symbolism, the Amaryllis represents the Virgin Mary’s purity and divine love. The three petals of the Amaryllis are said to symbolize the Holy Trinity – the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – which is central to Christianity. The Amaryllis is also associated with Christmas and Easter, and it is often used as a decoration during these religious holidays.

Symbolism of the number three

  • The number three is significant in many religions and has been used to symbolize various things. In Christianity, three is considered a holy number because of the Holy Trinity – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The three petals of the Amaryllis are said to represent these three entities.
  • In other religions, three is a symbol of completeness and represents the three stages of life – birth, life, and death. It also symbolizes the past, present, and future and represents the three elements – the sun, the moon, and the earth.
  • Three is also a powerful number in numerology and represents creativity, self-expression, and manifestation. The number three is often associated with luck, fortune, and success.

The Amaryllis in art and literature

The Amaryllis has been celebrated in art, literature, and poetry throughout history. In literature, the Amaryllis is often used as a symbol of strength, beauty, and hope. In paintings, the Amaryllis is often depicted in bright colors and used to represent passion, love, and beauty. The flower’s stunning beauty has inspired many artists throughout history, including Monet, Matisse, and Van Gogh.

Additionally, the Amaryllis is a popular flower in holiday decorations and is often used to create festive centerpieces and garlands. Its bright colors and captivating beauty make it a striking addition to any home, office, or event.

Color Meaning
Red Passion, Love, and Romance
White Purity, Honesty, and Innocence
Pink Femininity, Beauty, and Elegance
Orange Creativity, Energy, and Enthusiasm

The Amaryllis is a flower that carries deep religious symbolism and can be enjoyed in a variety of ways throughout the year. Whether used for decoration or inspiration, this beautiful flower continues to captivate and inspire people around the world.

Amaryllis in Art and Literature

The amaryllis flower has been a source of inspiration for many artists and writers across different periods of time. Its beauty and symbolism have been depicted in various art forms, including paintings, poetry, and literature.

  • In literature: The amaryllis flower is often associated with themes of beauty, love, and pride. In Greek mythology, the story of Amaryllis tells of a maiden who fell in love with Alteo, a shepherd. She tried to win his affection by piercing her heart with a golden arrow for 30 consecutive nights until the blood-red amaryllis flower finally sprouted from the ground. This tale has inspired many literary works, one of which is the poem “The Amaryllis” by Robert Herrick.
  • In paintings: The vibrant colors and unique shape of the amaryllis flower have attracted the attention of many painters. One of the most notable works featuring the amaryllis is Vincent van Gogh’s “Amaryllis in a Vase.” This painting captures the vivid red of the amaryllis petals against a contrasting dark background, highlighting the flower’s beauty and depth.
  • In poetry: The amaryllis flower symbolizes many things in poetry, ranging from love and beauty to temptation and danger. Sylvia Plath’s poem “Hear the Voices of the Past” uses the amaryllis to convey a sense of loss and longing, with lines such as “Look at the amaryllis, / How it flutters its petals at dusk.”

The amaryllis flower’s symbolism transcends cultures and time periods, making it a powerful symbol in the world of art and literature.

To further appreciate the beauty of the amaryllis and its significance, below is a table of different amaryllis cultivars and their respective meanings:

Cultivar Name Meaning
Red Lion Primal love, passion, and strength
Apple Blossom Feminine beauty and grace
Blossom Peacock Self-confidence, pride, and vanity
Dancing Queen Energy, enthusiasm, and joy

Each cultivar represents a different aspect of the amaryllis flower’s symbolism, showing just how much this flower has inspired and captivated artists and writers throughout history.

Color symbolism associated with Amaryllis

The Amaryllis flower is known for its exquisite beauty and vibrant colors. Each color of the Amaryllis represents a distinct message or feeling. Understanding the color symbolism associated with the Amaryllis can help you select the appropriate flower for gifting or decorating to convey the right message. Here is an in-depth look at the color symbolism associated with the Amaryllis flower.

  • Red: The red Amaryllis symbolizes love and passion. It is a popular choice for Valentine’s Day or as a romantic gesture for your significant other.
  • White: The white Amaryllis represents purity, innocence, and spirituality and is often seen in weddings as bridal bouquets or table centerpieces.
  • Pink: The pink Amaryllis is associated with femininity, admiration, and appreciation. It is an excellent choice for showing appreciation or expressing congratulations.
  • Purple: The purple Amaryllis is associated with royalty, elegance, and sophistication. It is perfect for formal events and represents luxury.
  • Orange: The orange Amaryllis symbolizes enthusiasm, pride, and determination. It is an ideal flower to show support and encouragement to someone starting a new venture or to give as congratulations for a job well done.

It is important to consider the colors of Amaryllis flowers when selecting arrangements for events, as well as for individual gifts. The right color choice can help you convey your emotions effectively and make your message more meaningful.

Take note that the meanings of flower colors may vary depending on the culture and context designed for. However, the color symbolism mentioned above generally represents the same meaning for Amaryllis flowers.

Color Symbolism
Red Love, passion
White Purity, innocence, spirituality
Pink Femininity, admiration, appreciation
Purple Royalty, elegance, sophistication
Orange Enthusiasm, pride, determination

Knowing the specific meanings behind the colors of Amaryllis flowers can help you make a powerful statement through the language of flowers. With a variety of colors to choose from, you can customize your message to suit any occasion.

Amaryllis Flower in Different Cultures

The amaryllis flower is a beloved flower in many cultures and is highly regarded for its beauty. Apart from its aesthetic appeal, it holds symbolic meaning in different cultures. Here are some of the meanings of the amaryllis flower in different cultures:

  • Greek Mythology: The amaryllis flower is said to have originated from the story of a beautiful shepherdess named Amaryllis who was in love with a shepherd named Alteo. Unfortunately, Alteo did not love her back. In an attempt to win his affections, Amaryllis pierced her heart with a golden arrow and then later fell to the ground. From where she fell, a tall and beautiful flower grew.
  • Victorian Era: In the Victorian Era, amaryllis flowers symbolized strength and determination. People often gave the flowers as gifts to show their admiration and respect for someone with those qualities.
  • Chinese Culture: In Chinese culture, red amaryllis flowers symbolize good fortune and are often given as gifts during the Lunar New Year.

The Number 6

The number 6 is often associated with the amaryllis flower in different cultures. This is because the flower has six petals and six stamens.

In numerology, the number 6 represents harmony and balance. It also symbolizes love, family, and relationships. The flower’s association with the number 6 may suggest a connection between the amaryllis flower and harmony in relationships or family life.

Apart from its numerological meaning, the number 6 holds significance in other traditions as well. In Judaism, the sixth day of creation is when God created humanity. In Chinese culture, the number 6 is considered lucky because it sounds like the word for “flow” in Mandarin, which represents wealth and prosperity.

Symbolism Meaning
Amaryllis Flower Beauty, Strength, Determination
Number 6 Harmony, Love, Family, Relationships

The amaryllis flower and the number 6 hold various meanings in different cultures. Whether it’s a symbol of love, balance, or good fortune, the beauty and symbolism of the amaryllis flower continues to captivate people around the world.

The Significance of Amaryllis as a Gift

Amaryllis is a popular flower that makes an excellent gift for various occasions. This beautiful flower symbolizes different things, depending on the culture and context in which it is given. Here, we will delve into what the amaryllis flower symbolizes and why it is an ideal gift for your loved ones.

The Number 7

The number 7 is a significant number in numerology, and it is associated with the amaryllis flower. The amaryllis plant typically produces seven flowers in a single stem, making the number seven an important aspect of this plant’s symbolism.

  • In Christianity, the number seven symbolizes completeness, perfection, and fulfillment. It represents the seven days of creation, seven sacraments, seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, and seven virtues.
  • In ancient cultures, such as the Sumerians and Babylonians, the number seven was considered a sacred number. They associated it with luck, prosperity, and good fortune.
  • In astrology, the number seven relates to Neptune, the planet of spirituality, intuition, and creativity. It represents the highest level of spiritual awakening and consciousness.

These various interpretations of the number seven align well with the symbolism of the amaryllis flower, making it a perfect gift for those seeking spiritual fulfillment, good luck, and creativity.

The Language of Amaryllis

Like many other flowers, amaryllis has its own language, and the color of the flower tends to determine its meaning. Here are some of the most common meanings associated with the different colors of the amaryllis flower:

Color Meaning
Red Love, passion, and desire
White Purity, innocence, and beauty
Pink Friendship, affection, and gratitude
Orange Enthusiasm, excitement, and energy
Yellow Joy, cheerfulness, and happiness

When you give an amaryllis flower as a gift, consider the color that best conveys your message, especially if you want to add a personal touch to your gift.

How the Amaryllis flower earned its name

The Amaryllis flower, scientifically known as Hippeastrum, has quite an interesting history behind its name. According to Greek mythology, Amaryllis was a beautiful princess who fell in love with a shepherd, Alteo. However, Alteo was unaware of her existence, and Amaryllis was heartbroken. She decided to take drastic measures to get Alteo’s attention and visited the Oracle of Delphi. The Oracle instructed her to pierce her heart with a golden arrow for thirty nights, leaving the arrow outside Alteo’s door each night until he finally noticed her. The thirty nights passed, and on the final morning, a beautiful crimson flower, the Amaryllis, bloomed where Amaryllis’s blood had fallen.

The Symbolism of the Amaryllis flower

  • The Amaryllis flower symbolizes determination, strength, and radiant beauty.
  • With its tall stem and trumpet-like bloom, it represents pride and determination to succeed in the face of adversity.
  • The bright and bold colors of the Amaryllis flower, such as red and pink, signify passion, love, and femininity.

The Significance of the Number 8 in Amaryllis

The Amaryllis flower is unique because it has six petals, which combine to form a trumpet-like shape. Additionally, it has a central stalk or stem that grows up to 8 inches in length. The number 8 is considered lucky in many cultures, a symbol of prosperity and success, making the Amaryllis flower a popular gift for those celebrating a milestone or achievement.

Moreover, in numerology, the number 8 is associated with ambition, self-discipline, and inner wisdom. It is often viewed as a spiritual number, representing balance and harmony between the material and spiritual realms. Thus, the Amaryllis flower’s association with the number 8 adds further significance to its symbolism of determination and strength in attaining one’s goals.

Amaryllis Varieties and Colors

The Amaryllis flower comes in a wide range of colors, from bright and bold hues to soft pastels. Some popular colors include:

Color Symbolism
Red Passion, love, and courage
Pink Love, femininity, and creativity
White Purity, innocence, and new beginnings
Orange Energy, warmth, and creativity

Today, the Amaryllis flower is a popular gift for several occasions, including Christmas, birthdays, and weddings. Its elegance, beauty, and meaning make it a lovely addition to any bouquet or floral arrangement.

The varying meanings of the Amaryllis flower in different contexts

The amaryllis flower is known for its stunning and vibrant beauty, but it also possesses deep symbolic meanings in different cultures and contexts. Let’s explore the varying meanings of the amaryllis flower:

The Number 9

The number 9 holds a special significance in numerology, and it is associated with the amaryllis flower in a symbolic way. The amaryllis has six petals and three sepals, which add up to nine. In numerology, nine represents spiritual enlightenment, inner-wisdom, divine self, and completion. It also signifies humanitarianism, service to humanity, and the awakening of consciousness. As such, the amaryllis flower is often associated with spiritual transformation, personal growth, and enlightenment.

Varying Symbolisms

  • In Greek mythology, the amaryllis flower represents pride, determination, and radiant beauty. According to the legend, a nymph named Amaryllis fell in love with a shepherd named Alteo, but he was indifferent to her. In her desperate attempt to win his love, she pierced her heart with a golden arrow for 30 nights, and on the thirtieth night, a beautiful flower sprouted from her blood, capturing Alteo’s heart and signifying the power of true love.
  • In Christianity, the amaryllis flower symbolizes the Virgin Mary’s purity and innocence. The red color of the flower represents the blood of Christ, and it is often used during the Christmas season to adorn homes and churches.
  • In Chinese culture, the amaryllis flower is associated with good luck and prosperity. It is a popular gift during Chinese New Year, and it is believed to bring good fortune to the receiver. The red color of the flower is also symbolic of joy, happiness, and success.


The amaryllis flower holds different meanings and symbolisms in various cultures and contexts, but one thing is constant – its beauty and elegance. Whether you use it for decoration, gift, or spiritual purposes, the amaryllis flower is a powerful symbol of love, enlightenment, and prosperity.

Symbolism Meaning
Love Powerful, True, Unrequited
Enlightenment Spiritual growth, personal transformation
Good Luck Prosperity, Success, Joy

The amaryllis flower is a fascinating and versatile symbol that can enrich different aspects of our lives. Whether you admire its beauty, seek its spiritual guidance, or embrace its cultural traditions, the amaryllis flower is a timeless and inspiring symbol that deserves recognition.

How to care for and grow Amaryllis flowers.

The Amaryllis flower is a stunning sight to behold, with its striking blooms that come in shades of pink, red, white, and even orange. It is a popular choice for indoor gardening, as it is relatively easy to care for and can brighten up any room. Here are some tips on how to care for and grow Amaryllis flowers:

  • Choose the right pot: Amaryllis bulbs should be planted in a pot that is at least 6 inches in diameter and has drainage holes on the bottom. The pot should also be deep enough to allow for the roots to grow.
  • Plant the bulb: Place the bulb in the center of the pot, with the pointed end facing up. Cover it with soil, leaving the top third of the bulb exposed. Water the soil well, but make sure not to overwater, as this can cause the bulb to rot.
  • Provide adequate light: Amaryllis plants need plenty of light to grow and bloom. Place them in a well-lit area, but avoid direct sunlight, as this can scorch the leaves and flowers.

In addition to these basic care tips, there are some other things to keep in mind to help your Amaryllis thrive:

Watering: Water the plant regularly, but be careful not to overwater it, as this can cause the roots to rot. Allow the soil to dry out slightly in between waterings, but don’t let it become bone dry.

Fertilizing: Amaryllis plants benefit from regular fertilization, particularly during the growing season. Use a balanced fertilizer, such as a 10-10-10, once a month during the spring and summer.

Supporting: As the Amaryllis grows, it may become top-heavy and require support to prevent it from falling over. Use a bamboo stake or other support to prop up the stem as needed.

Temperature Watering Light
60-70°F Water when soil is dry to the touch Keep in bright, indirect light
70-80°F Water when soil is slightly moist Keep in bright, indirect light
80-90°F Water when soil is moist, but not soaked Provide shade during the hottest part of the day

By following these simple tips, you can enjoy the beauty of the Amaryllis flower in your home for many years to come!

What does the amaryllis flower symbolize?

  1. What is the meaning behind the amaryllis flower?
    The amaryllis flower is known for symbolizing splendid beauty and pride. This stunning bloom is often associated with strength, determination, and radiance.
  2. What are the different colors of amaryllis flowers and their meanings?
    The red amaryllis represents love and passion, while the white one represents purity and innocence. The pink one symbolizes femininity and grace, the orange one radiates enthusiasm and energy, and the yellow one signifies happiness and new beginnings.
  3. Is the amaryllis flower associated with any particular culture or mythology?
    The amaryllis flower has a rich history in Greek mythology, where it is said to have originated from a lovestruck maiden named Amaryllis. It is also considered a symbol of the Virgin Mary in Christian tradition.
  4. What occasions are ideal for gifting amaryllis flowers?
    Amaryllis flowers are perfect for occasions such as weddings, anniversaries, Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day, and Christmas. They make for a wonderful gift that expresses love, admiration, and appreciation.
  5. What kind of personality traits are associated with those who love amaryllis flowers?
    People who appreciate amaryllis flowers are often seen as adventurous, courageous, and independent. They are also known for having a refined taste and an appreciation for beauty in various forms.
  6. Can amaryllis flowers be grown indoors?
    Yes, amaryllis flowers can be grown indoors in pots or containers. They require bright, indirect sunlight and should be watered sparingly to avoid overwatering.
  7. Are there any tips for caring for amaryllis flowers?
    To care for amaryllis flowers, place them in a bright and warm location, provide adequate drainage, and water them when the soil feels dry to the touch. After they bloom, cut off the spent flower stalk and continue to water the plant until it goes dormant.

In Conclusion

Thanks for reading about the symbolism of the amaryllis flower! Whether you’re looking for a meaningful gift or simply appreciate their beauty and significance, amaryllis flowers are sure to add a touch of elegance and charm to any occasion. Remember to care for them well if you decided to bring them home. Come back again soon for more flower insights and gardening tips!