Acanthus Leaves Plaster Designs: History and Symbolism

Blog |July 26th, 2017

Acanthus leaves plaster designs have a long and illustrious history steeped with symbolism. You can find these leaves as ornamental elements on exterior and interior areas of various types of structures, including homes. It surprises some people that the design of these leaves is derived from an actual plant. The most common variety of this plant is the Acanthus spinous, and it has deeply cut leaves.

Acanthus Plants

Acanthus plants thrive in the Mediterranean region of the world. They are large leafy plants that are identifiable by the spiny, jagged leaves. Also, they are in the perennial category and come back each year without the need for reseeding or replanting. Since the acanthus is so plentiful in this area, it is easy to understand why the ancient Greeks and Romans simulated them in their architectural enhancements, but refer to the next section to learn further facts about this.

A Brief History of the Acanthus Leaves Plaster Designs

The earliest example of acanthus leaves in architecture is the Temple of Apollo Epicurius in Bassae, which dates back to 450BC to 420BC. Acanthus leaves in various materials were used on buildings throughout ancient Greece, as is evident in the Corinthian friezes and columns. Similar to the Greeks, the Romans also utilised these leaves in their prestigious private and public buildings. Later, during the Renaissance, there was another expansion on the use of these leaves in not only architectural creations, but also in artwork, textiles and furniture. The furnishings for France’s Louis XVI show this motif in their design. Today, property owners and architects choose the acanthus leaves plaster designs to enhance their buildings or homes, and without knowing it, are becoming part of their long, interesting history.

Symbolism of the Acanthus Leaves

Acanthus plants were much more than just inspiration for architectural enhancement, though, during their history. People in the Mediterranean area also utilised these plants for their medicinal qualities. From this fact, certain symbolic beliefs came about with the acanthus leaves, including the sign of healing, longevity and rebirth. Also, since various cultures started adding these leaf enhancements to funerary elements and structures, the leaves began to symbolise immortality.

Be part of the history of the acanthus leaves plaster designs, by turning to our company of Hopkins Plaster Studio for your supply of them. We offer a wide assortment of styles and sizes in them for both interior and exterior enhancements. Along with these designs, we provide an extensive range of other plaster elements to transform your simple structure into an elegant, glamourous one. Consult with us about your needs to receive a quote.

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