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1st March

Daffodil St Davids Day
Daffodil St Davids Day

1st March

St Davids Day associated with Wales. It is thought St David advised troops to wear leeks in their hat so that they could be spotted from the enemy in the battle against the saxons. Myth legend intertwine. Source wise, we know that the leek and the Welsh are  referenced to in a poem by Michael Drayton in the 1600s.

The Poly Olbion by Michael Drayton(1563-1631)   in 1612. It is a long poem about England & Wales. IT describes the topography, legends of England and Wales, history engravings and maps.


Wales: Ewias
Ewias
Michael Drayton (1563–1631)

 

From “Poly-Olbion”

THE BRITONS, like devout, their messengers direct

To David, that he would their ancient right protect.
’Mongst Hatterill’s lofty hills, that with the clouds are crowned,
The valley Ewias lies, immured so deep and round,
As they below, that see the mountains rise so high,        5
Might think the straggling herds were grazing in the sky:
Which in it such a shape of solitude doth bear,
As Nature at the first appointed it for prayer:
Where, in an aged cell, with moss and ivy grown,
In which not to this day the sun hath ever shone,        10
That reverend British saint, in zealous ages past,
To contemplation lived; and did so truly fast,
As he did only drink what crystal Hodney yields,
And fed upon the leeks he gathered in the fields.
In memory of whom, in the revolving year,        15
The Welchmen on his day that sacred herb do wear.

 

Shakespeare wrote Henvy V in 1599 and describes there a Welsh Character wearing a Leek on St Davids Day. There was also a Travelling artist from Holland, who wrote journals “William Schellinks “. He wrote about how he saw men wearing the leek in their hats on his visit to london in 1662 and how  the British teased the welsh about their actions on St Davids day.

The Daffodil is also sometimes worn which is part of the same botanical family as the  Leek, Amaryllidaceae. However, the Daffodil is poisonous for consumption.

 

David Lloyd George Prime minister wore a Daffodil in his lapel every March and when it was the Investiture of the Prince of Wales in 1911 .

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