Have you packed away your winter coat yet for this year? Or is it still hanging the hall, just in case? It's almost the time when spring turns to summer and the winds are a welcome breeze, not a force to wrap up against!
What's this got to do with Daniel's illustration of a rather elegant Horse? Well, the ancient Greeks (a big influence on Daniel's work!) believed the winds were brought through the earth by swift running horses. Though, Zephyrus, herald of the spring winds, is the only one you'd welcome. The other three Anemoi, horse-gods of the winds, brought winter freezes or autumn storms destroying crops in their path.
Zephyrus, on the other hand, brings the warmer air and has a bountiful partnership being married to the goddess of flowers and father to their son the god of fruit. Now that sounds a recipe for a happy home!
Except, as is the way of Greek gods, Zephyrus is not content with monogamy. He was also linked to the goddess of the rainbow and sired Apollo's horse with yet another. Zephyrus was also (sort of) responsible for the creation of the hyacinth when he accidentally killed a beautiful youth, the object of unrequited love, in a jealous rage. It seems many dying Greek youths were turned to flowers!
Whatever the colourful past of the Greek gods, Daniel's colourful equine creature perfectly evokes the early summer ... I can even spot a wind-swept flower on his haunches.
Shop Daniel's Horse design - available as greeting card or art print.
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One of the most recognisable songbirds in the garden is the plucky Robin. Being a member of the thrush family, it’s not only cousin to the song thrush and blackbird, but also to the nightingale, so it’s no surprise that the robin has a beautiful voice as well.
The earliest depictions of the use of the heart symbol is believed to derive from the ancient culture of Cyrene, a North African city which was founded by the Greeks in 631 BC, and then later ruled by the Romans.
There’s a lot of ancient mythical beasts which seem pretty isolated, unique to a country’s culture, or even to a specific region. Others, like mermaids, dragons, and giants, are intercultural, being known by many. The Phoenix is one of these mythical superstars, and was known by the Greeks, the Romans, the Egyptians, and even by the Chinese.