Dragonfly in culture
Dragonflies have often been seen as sinister. Names like "Devil's darning needle" and "ear cutter" link them with evil or injury. A folktale from Romania says that the dragonfly was once a horse possessed by the devil. In Swedish folklore the trolls use the dragonflies as spindles when weaving their clothes. They are often associated with snakes, a Welsh name is "adder's servant".
In East Asia and among Native Americans, dragonflies have a far better reputation, one that can also be said to have positively influenced modern day views about dragonflies in most countries, in the same vein as the insect's namesake the dragon, which has a positive image in the east, but initially an association with evil in the west.
They also have traditional uses as medicine in Japan and China.In some parts of the world it is considered lucky to have a dragonfly land on you, even to the point of yielding seven years of good luck. Images of dragonflies were common in Art Noveau, especially in jewelry designs. They have also been used as a decorative motif on Fabrics and home furnishings.
|Art Noveau jewellery dragonfly|
About 300 million years ago dragonflies could be about 1 m long and with a wing span of ab. 1,2 m.
photo : grethe bachmann