Origins of the Bluebird as a Symbol of Happiness
The symbol of a bluebird as the harbinger of happiness is found in many cultures and may date back thousands of years. One of the oldest examples (found on oracle bone inscriptions of the Shang Dynasty, 1766-1122 BC) is from pre-modern China, where a blue bird (qingniao) was the messenger bird of Xi Wangmu, the ‘Queen Mother of the West’ who began life as a fearsome goddess and Immortal. By the Tang Dynasty (618-906 AD) she had evolved into a Daoist fairy queen and the protector/patron of “singing girls, dead women, novices, nuns, adepts and priestesses…women [who] stood outside the roles prescribed for women in the traditional Chinese family”. Depictions of Xi Wangmu often include a bird—the birds in the earliest depictions are difficult to identify, and by the Tang Dynasty, most of the birds appear in a circle, often with three legs, as a symbol of the sun.
(Interested in more bluebird articles, see our links below for more great information.)
Mountain Bluebirds http://vbelleblog.com/2016/11/03/mountain-bluebirds/
Bluebird China History: http://vbelleblog.com/2014/03/07/bluebird-china-history/
Bluebird Search http://vbelleblog.com/?s=bluebird
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