There is scarcely another flower that loses so much of its spectacular charm and magnificent splendour as the beautiful Water Lily when it is removed from its natural element. The flowers certainly present a saddened and bedraggled appearance when they are being peddled on our city streets by venders who stand stupidly in front of the theatres and larger department stores, grasping a bunch of these handsome, drooped buds and flowers by the neck as if they were so many shoestrings, and with about as much aesthetic conception! There is but one encouraging feature about this altogether too familiar sight, and that is the noticeable absence of patronage. If everyone should refrain from purchasing wild flowers from street hawkers it would discourage the peddling practice quicker than any other method, and consequently prolong their existence, which has already been threatened in many instances with extinction. The Water Lily is of high-born parentage, and enjoys the proud distinction of kinship to the sacred Lotus of the Orient. The Lotus is connected with the birth of the Hindoo deity, and has always been symbolic of the Buddha faith, to which something like five hundred million souls bow allegiance. The Hindoos use the Lotus in their funeral ceremonies, and also to decorate their temples and monuments. It is the national flower of Siam. Japanese artists use it extensively for designing and decorating, and their craftsmen reproduce it in ivory, gold and bronze. Lotus petals were found in the tomb of Rameses II. in 1881, where they had reposed for over three thousand years. During the Roman period, the Egyptians cultivated the Lotus along the River Nile for food. The roots were dried in the sun, and then pounded into flour. There is a superstition among the Wallachians, in Roumania, that every flower possesses a soul, and that the Water Lily sits in solemn judgment at the gates of Paradise, demanding of each blossom a strict accounting as to the disposition made of its odour. Along some parts of the Rhine the natives chant magic verses while gathering Water Lilies, which, they believe, will keep away witches. A pretty Lenape Indian legend records the origin of the flower in a falling star that upon striking the water changed into a Water Lily. The Water Nymph gets its name from Nympha, a nature goddess of Greek and Roman mythology. This wonderful family includes the gigantic Royal Water Lily, Victoria regia, of Brazil, which has the largest flower in the world, and was named by Dr. Lindley in honour of Queen Victoria in 1837. Some of these flowers measure a foot and a half in diameter, and their monstrous leaves are often six or seven feet broad and are capable of bearing the weight of a man standing thereon. Thoreau regarded the White Water Lily as "the queen of river flowers.,, He might have gone further and said, "queen of our waters," for few flowers are held in higher esteem. They seem to lend a sort of lasting enchantment to every outing, brief or extended, and almost everybody can associate one or more pleasant memories with them. How I have enjoyed the precious moments on several occasions when it was my privilege to watch the deer feeding on the "lily pads" near our Adirondack camp! No other experience in outdoor life can compare favourably with it: the Water Lilies studding the thickly padded surface of the inlet; the crisp, invigorating, balsam-laden air; the wild, tangled background of gaunt, scraggly trees and stumps, and the deer - I cannot adequately describe it; no one can. Often I have let my canoe drift quietly near these same "spring holes" where the deer fed, while I sought to lure, with tiny flies, the speckled trout that also loved the fascination and seclusion of the captivating Water Lilies and their "pads." We never plucked the blossoms, for they were our daily companions. The large, attractive flowers float majestically upon the surface of the water in a field of waxy-green leaves, and exhale an exquisite fragrance. Their numerous pointed oblong petals are deeply hollowed. Their texture is firm, and their colour is a beautiful white, sometimes tinged with pink. They are arranged alternately in several rows and finally graduate toward the centre into many pure yellow stamens. Their four dark green sepals are shaped like the large petals, and are lined with white or pinkish white. The innermost stamens are very slender and bear long anthers, while those intermediate with the petals become broader with shortened tips. The pistil is compound with radiating and projecting stigmas. The flowers are from three to five and a half inches broad. They open at sunrise, and close toward noon, excepting perhaps on cloudy days. As they fade, they are drawn beneath the surface of the water, where the seeds ripen. The large, floating leaf is from four to twelve inches in diameter, and has a toothless margin. The upper surface is smooth, shiny and rich green, but the underside is more or less hairy and reddish in colour. It is shaped almost like a large, rounded horseshoe, and is cleft at the base with the tip of the divisions slightly flaring and pointed. The texture is firm and tough. The flower and leaves or "pads" are borne on long, slender, round, rubbery stems. These are red in colour and have four main air canals. They rise to the surface of the water from long, thick, horizontal, and occasionally branching perennial rootstocks, which are said to have some medicinal properties. The Water Lily is found in clear waters of lakes and streams from June to September, and it ranges from the Gulf States northward to Manitoba and Newfoundland.