Olive Tree Symbolism

Posted by Ella Dooly on

Olive trees have a rich and meaningful symbolism behind them, rooted throughout the ages in many different cultures and religions. Its feature across the ages has transformed the olive tree into a universal symbol of peace, friendship and prosperity.

Find out more in this blog post about olive tree meaning and symbolism.

 

Pair of Olive Trees

Olive Tree Meaning

The most significant symbolism of the olive tree is within ancient Greek mythology. One story tells us how Zeus challenged Athena, Goddess of Wisdom, and Poseidon, God of the Sea, to a contest. The winner would become the leader of a city.

Poseidon went first, hitting his trident off a nearby rock producing a powerful, salty spring. Athena, however, had other ideas. She produced a beautiful green, olive tree it’s branches adorned with silver-green foliage and green ripening fruits.

Athena was victorious, winning the hearts and minds of the people. The city of Athens was born. To the citizens of Athens, the olive tree represented food, fuel and shelter, providing them with everything they needed. From this moment on, the olive tree was immortalised in the history books and treasured across ancient Greece.


The Tree of Eternity

Olive trees are infamous for living for thousands of years making them a symbol of longevity and health. Across Greece today you will find olive tree groves owned by families that have been passed down through the generations, harvesting the fruits of their labours.

 

Olives Ripening on a Tree

The Tree of Peace and Friendship

The phrase ‘extending an olive branch’ is commonly used when people try to make amends with each other, but where does this saying come from?

There are many references to olives throughout the bible, but this particular phrase originates from the story of Noah and the Ark.

The tale tells about the 40 days and 40 nights of relentless rain and flooding. Once the storm had calmed, Noah sent a dove to find a sign of land. It returned with an olive branch in its beak, a sign that the worst was over.

A glimmer of hope, peace and a new start for humanity.

 

Send an Olive Tree as a Gift

Olive trees are easy to care for and require little attention throughout the year. That’s what makes them even better gifts to send to friends and family to liven up their garden. Our wonderful range of olive trees includes; The Olive Tree Gift, Pair of Olive Trees Gifts and The Twisted Olive Tree Gift. Each one is living, lasting and full of meaning, perfect for any occasion.

Read all about how to care for the tree in our olive tree care guide and find even more about the natural history with our olive tree facts and information page.

Share article