Thursday, December 1, 2011

David’s daffodils

Until I came upon the gravestone for David Owens (d. 1870) in Radnor Cemetery, I had never noticed daffodils carved on a gravestone, other than perhaps as minor players in a bouquet of mixed flowers.

Died 1870.
Aged 55y.

A native of wales.

Often, the daffodil is understood to represent “death of youth, desire, art, grace, beauty, deep regard.” David Owen was not especially young when he died. Are the daffodils meant to show that he was artful? Held in deep regard?

Before we jump to conclusions, let’s throw more information into the mix: The Owens marker tells us (although it is difficult to read in the photo above) that David Owens, like many early settlers in Radnor, Ohio, was a native of Wales.

You guessed it: The daffodil is the national flower of Wales.

Radnor Cemetery, Delaware County, Ohio


  1. I didn't know that! Getting the right interpretation is so important.

  2. Where I grew up, a Welsh neighbour (a war bride, in our neighbourhood), always celebrated St. David's Day with masses of daffodils (March 1st, if I remember). I do remember she sometimes had difficulty finding "enough" at that time of year. There is so much to learn about designs on gravestones - thanks for this one - I'd forgotten about daffydowndillys for Wales.

  3. Marian and Celia, thanks for taking the time to add your comments. You know, when I started this post, I was unaware that the daffodil is associated with Wales. I still can't say what made me put the two together--except that I literally put them together in a Google search, and bingo! Sometimes you gotta keep at it until the pieces fall easily in place.


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