DO YOU KNOW – The tradition of rosemary?
Rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis) is an aromatic herb belonging to the family Labiatae. Its Latin origins indicate “dew of the sea”, and the rich oil and perfume derived from the plant have been used for centuries. The ancients believed it strengthened the memory, and on this account it became an emblem of fidelity and a symbol of remembrance
The tradition of giving rosemary is traced to Roman soldiers marching into battle. Soldiers would pick a sprig of rosemary and give it to their closest comrade, who would wear the rosemary to signify trust, friendship and remembrance.
On the hills of Gallipoli wild rosemary grew and Australian and New Zealand soldiers picked a sprig of rosemary and gave it to a mate as they were heading off to fight. For many it is a symbol of remembrance for those who paid the ultimate sacrifice.
It can thus be associated with the ANZAC tradition of being loyal to one’s mates and active in honouring the memory of fallen and departed comrades.
Legatees from our local area will be out in force this ANZAC Day with trays of Rosemary for you. Drop a donation in their box for a great cause.