previous next


There is no doubt that all the efforts of art are surpassed by the amaranth,1 which is, to speak correctly, rather a purple ear2 than a flower, and, at the same time, quite inodorous. It is a marvellous feature in this plant, that it takes a delight in being gathered; indeed, the more it is plucked, the better it grows. It comes into flower in the month of August, and lasts throughout the autumn. The finest of all is the amaranth of Alexandria, which is generally gathered for keeping; for it is a really marvellous3 fact, that when all the other flowers have gone out, the amaranth, upon being dipped in water, comes to life again: it is used also for making winter chaplets. The peculiar quality of the amaranth is sufficiently indicated by its name, it having been so called from the circumstance that it never fades.4

1 The Celosia cristata of Linnæus.

2 "Spica." The moderns have been enabled to equal the velvety appearance of the amaranth in the tints imparted by them to their velvets. The Italians call it the "velvet-flower."

3 The real fact is, that the amaranth, being naturally a dry flower, and having little humidity to lose, keeps better than most others.

4 From the Greek , "not," and μαράινεσθαι, "to fade."

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

load focus Latin (Karl Friedrich Theodor Mayhoff, 1906)
hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

hide References (9 total)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: