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Wreaths at Watergate

The popularity of seasonal wreaths at Watergate seems to grow with each passing year.

So enduring are wreaths in human culture that their origins and early meaning are largely lost to history.   A wreath’s circular shape – in its most common form -- certainly symbolizes continuity, eternity and rebirth.   The materials most traditionally used in their construction – evergreens, leaves, branches, pine, bark, twigs, fruits, flowers, pods and berries – represent life, strength, hardiness and purity.

In Greece and Rome, laurel wreaths worn on one’s head were a sign of honor, achievement, glory and high standing.   In Christianity, wreaths are sometimes an emblem of hope and anticipation, and sometimes a marker of solemnity and remembrance.

Apart from any religious import, holiday wreaths are festive, decorative and fragarant. Like pineapples in Colonial times, wreaths in winter denote hospitality.  They welcome visitors and passersby alike.

In 2008, in spite of (or perhaps in response to) the worsening recession, I noticed a marked increase in the quantity, quality and diversity of the winter wreaths draped upon Watergate’s doors, and decided to chronicle them on our website.   In the years since, I have tried to find the time to photograph Watergate's wreaths, but the time window available to complete this task is limited, and my personal schedule and the weather has not always enabled me to complete this task.

Like many of you, I look forward to seeing everyone's wreaths unveiled whether or not they are photographed.

I wish you and your families the happiest of holidays.

Brian
November 2016

 

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