The spicy scented Madonna lily (Lilium candidum) is one of the oldest cultivated ornamental plants: it was grown as long ago as the middle of the
third millennium BC. It is first mentioned in Egyptian texts dating from around 2500 BC. And illustrations of it are found on vases from
Santorini (1500 BC).
Assyrian reliefs from Nineveh also show this elegant lily, which was regarded as a symbol of purity, innocence, pride and gentility.