the first painted rose

Where did the rose come from? Or at least, where did she first appear to us, casting her spell that would bewitch our taste for her beauty for centuries? 

 

The first undisputed image of a rose - 'The Blue Bird Fresco' painted some 3,500 years ago

The first undisputed image of a rose - 'The Blue Bird Fresco' painted some 3,500 years ago

The answer is found in a closet in Crete. Discovered by British archeologist Sir Arthur Evans while rummaging through a Minoan town house in Knossos, he describes 

 

“for the first time in Ancient Art, appears a wild rose bush, partly against a deep red and partly against a white background, and other coiling sprays of the same plant hang down from rock-work arch above. The flowers are of a golden rose colour with orange centres dotted with deep red.”

 

The fresco is dated between 1470 and 1400 BC. For the first time, we have some real evidence in the form of the faint 5 petal flower in the lower left hand side. The first true representation, the beginning of her documentation through history. Thus began our journey of discovering all the secrets she would whisper to us in the garden, in the wild, and through imagery created by artists desperate to show her likeness through their eyes. 

 

[Research from The Rose by Jennifer Potter]