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The Fleur-de-lis and Its Meanings and Uses


The fleur-de-lis, a stylized flower with French origins, has been used for centuries because of its design and symbolism. Whether used as a royal coat of arms, a religious symbol, or a simple decoration, it has a long and rich history. You’ll likely recognize the symbol, which typically has three petals attached at the base.

The fleur-de-lis has been around for centuries—it even appears in relics from ancient civilizations. With such a long history, it’s difficult to know the symbol’s exact origins. In a religious context, it may denote purity. French monarchs used the symbol to denote the divine right to rule. Ancient Egyptians used it to represent the snake that bit and killed Cleopatra.

The fleur-de-lis is an iconic symbol that permeates modern culture. One famous example is the Boy Scouts of America. Their emblem is a red or gold fleur-de-lis with an eagle flying in front of it.