The Saffron Gatherers

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Saffron Gatherer
The saffron gatherers, detail

In this wall fresco from Akrotiri on Santorini, two women are shown in a field of crocuses. The older woman is gathering the stamens of flowers and placing them in a basket. The younger woman has a partially shaven head, and is gathering stamens with both hands. Saffron is derived from the stamens and has been used as a dye since antiquity. Saffron was used to dye robes and saffron robes appear frequently in the wall frescoes. In classical Greece, saffron was a symbol of wealth and power.

Saffron Gatherers
the saffron gatherers

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