Every household wants their table to look extra special on Thanksgiving Day. Gathering with special people is a tradition Americans have observed since that first celebratory feast that the colonists shared with the Wampanoag Indians in 1621. One of the most iconic fixtures on fall harvest tables, but especially on Thanksgiving dinner tables is the Cornucopia.
Background on the Cornucopia
The word comes from two Latin words: cornu, meaning horn, and copia, roughly translated as plenty. The horn of plenty is also a symbol of the harvest. It is connected with prosperity, abundance, and of course, the harvest. It is traditionally filled with fresh fruits, nuts, ornamental corn, gourds, and often with flowers.
The cornucopia is believed to date back to the 5th century B.C. According to the Greek myth that surrounds its origin, the horn originally belonged to a goat named Almathea. She served as Zeus’ foster mother. Zeus was the son of Cronus and Rhea. Even though his son was a mere infant, Cronus was convinced that his son would grow up to overthrow him. He was determined to prevent that from ever happening. Rhea, fearing for her son’s welfare, sent him to live in a cave on Mount Ida where Almathea cared for him.
One day when Zeus and Almathea were playing, Zeus accidentally broke her horn off. She turned into a unicorn. The horn acquired magical powers. When Zeus grew older, remorse for the accident consumed him. He returned the horn to Almathea. Whenever Almathea wished for something, it would appear in the horn.
Throughout history, artists have depicted the cornucopia in their artwork, even though it first appeared as a word in the English dictionary in the 1500s. Artists representations always show the horn of plenty in settings where people are eating, and it sits on a table where it overflows with fruit, nuts, flowers and other delicacies.
Be sure to let People’s Flower Shops help you decorate your Thanksgiving table. Contact us about flowers for your holiday home, today.