The Meaning of Columbine

This page is to remind us how beautiful columbine can be to our eyes.  According to Merriam-Webster, it's still a flower that grows in the Rocky Mountains and not the measuring stick of school violence. From the Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary web site (here), below is the true meaning of columbine.

Main Entry: col·um·bine
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English, from Medieval Latin columbina, from Latin, feminine of columbinus like a dove, from columba dove; akin to Old High German holuntar elder tree, Greek kolymbos a small grebe, kelainos black
Date: 14th century
: any of a genus (Aquilegia) of plants of the buttercup family with irregular showy spurred flowers: as a: a red-flowered plant (A. canadensis) of eastern North America b: a blue-flowered plant (A. caerulea) of the Rocky Mountains


Every time I hear the word columbine, the images that come to mind are students fleeing from their school with their hands above their head; of Patrick Ireland falling out of the shattered library window; of the crosses on Rebel Hill.  Below are pictures from the Wyoming Territorial Prison in Laramie in June 2000.  Hopefully they'll help us remember that a columbine is supposed to be an object of beauty, and not terrorized students running for their lives from their school.


Never Forget Always Remember