Q: What is the origin of the term "Lady of the Lilies"?

A: The expression "Lady of the Lilies" has its roots in the Canticle of Canticles (2:2). Starting in the tenth century, symbols of the Canticle were applied to Mary. One of these symbols was the lily, standing for perfect beauty and purity. The expression lilium inter spinas taken from the Canticle (2:2) was introduced in the litany of Loreto (1578) and in the Little Office of the Immaculata (by A. Rodriguez, 1617).
The Virgin of the Lilies
Carlos Schwabe
Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam


Return to Your Questions

Return to The Mary Page

This page, maintained by The Marian Library/International Marian Research Institute, Dayton, Ohio 45469-1390, and created by Christine M. Miller , was last modified Thursday, 10/16/2008 12:23:49 EDT by Ajay Kumar . Please send any comments to jroten1@udayton.edu.