Anemone multifield, or Wind Flower, as this delicate little Anemone is called, appears on the dry meadows in the springtime in a vast variety of hues, with many blossoms and much fruit. Its colours range from white to red, with many intermediate shades of yellow, pink, and purple-blue. It is to Pliny, the famous ancient philosopher, that it owes its name, for he declared that only the wind would cause Anemones to open; while a later poet has sung how Venus in her grief over the death of Adonis "poured out tears amain," and how "gentle flowers" were born to bloom at every drop that fell from her lovely eyes: "Where streams his blood, there blushing springs the rose, And where a tear has dropped, a Wind Flower blows."

Plate XXI

Wind Flower (Anemone multiiida)

Wind Flower (Anemone multiiida)

They are short-lived flowers; the wind blows them open and wafts them away. Rapidly the fruit is formed in a thimble-like head, which presently bursts and is seen to contain many white woolly seeds. The leaves are very deeply cleft.

Anemone Drutnmondii, or Alpine Anemone, has a larger flower and thicker stalks than A. mnltifida; it also grows higher up on the mountains, and may be found close to perpetual snow. The leaves are set in a circle round the stalk, about two inches below the blossom, and also grow up from the base of the plant. They are not so delicate or deeply cut as those of A. mnltifida. The flower is rather like a white buttercup, and is usually shaded with pale blue on the outside. The centre is yellow and green.

Anemone parviflora, or Few-flowered Anemone, the smallest and most delicate of all the mountain Anemones, is usually found growing in the thick forests, single and solitary. The flowers are white, veined and shaded with blue at the base of the sepals.