Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Fleur-de-lis, formerly the national emblem of France. The word means "flower of the lily," and the three tufts united by a band have as much resemblance to lilies as to anything else. Some, however, suppose the iris to be intended - an explanation which is perhaps favoured by the occurrence of the English "flower-de-luce" as the name of a kind of flag. Others see in the fleur-de-lis the head of an ancient spear called francisque. The English used to see a resemblance to a frog, whence the connection of frogs with Frenchmen. But it is now known to have existed as an emblem of royalty or nobility among various nations at different epochs, and ornaments of this kind are said to have been found carved on the sphinxes. The usual form of the French device is three fleur-de-lis on a single coat.