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The Intelligence of Flowers

3.89  ·  Rating details ·  106 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
“The republication of Maurice Maeterlinck’s ‘The Intelligence of Flowers,’ regrettably forgotten in our time, is long overdue. The introduction by Mosley is itself a gem, and contains one of the best overviews in print of writings about intelligence in Nature.” — Stephen Harrod Buhner, author of The Secret Teachings of Plants: The Intelligence of the Heart in the Direct Pe ...more
Paperback, 77 pages
Published November 29th 2007 by State University of New York Press (first published 1907)
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Jean-Paul Walshaw-Sauter



It is possible, I suppose that sometime
we will learn everything
there is to learn: what the world is, for example,
and what it means. I think this as I am crossing
from one field to another, in summer, and the
mockingbird is mocking me, as one who either
knows enough already or knows enough to be
perfectly content not knowing. Song being born
of quest he knows this: he must turn silent
were he suddenly assaulted with answers. Instead
oh hear his wild, caustic, tender warbling ceaselessly
Alexis Benitez
Apr 10, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Mis propias palabras no le harían justicia a este trabajo. Por tal razón considero que para ahorrar tiempo a todo aquel interesado, es mejor mostrar un fragmento de cada uno de los textos que componen esta recopilación :)

La inteligencia de las flores
Yo no imagino paraíso, ni vida de ultratumba por espléndida que sea, en que no estuviesen en su sitio tal magnífica haya de la Sainrencia o de una humilde ermita vecina de mi casa que ofrecen al transeúnte el modelo de todos los grandes movimientos d
Quân Khuê
Apr 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Một nhà thực vật học, một nhà thơ và một triết gia cùng nhau viết cuốn sách mỏng mà nặng này.

Dec 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
A poetic celebration of the "genius" of flowers. Maeterlinck wants to break down the high ridge that separates the animal and plant kingdoms and argues convincingly for a different understanding of intelligence than argument and reason. After reading this book, your own body feels mulchier and more vegetal.
Charles  Beauregard
Mar 27, 2017 rated it liked it
One of Borges' favorite books and one can see why. It gives reminisenses of Melville's naturalist musings in Moby-Dick and has the strong philosophical discussion to provide support.
Analia Pinto
You can see here what I've learned from this book already:
Sep 16, 2014 rated it really liked it
Maeterlinck n'a pas écrit que sur les insectes mais aussi sur les fleurs et les stratégies intelligentes (ou manquées) et parfois d'une complexité raffinée qu'elles ont développé pour assurer leur reproduction.
Un vrai bonheur de lecture car ces considérations botaniques sont rédigées dans un style suranné et poétique exceptionnel qui font de ces descriptions un récit passionant.
A lire avec Wikipedia pour avoir l'image.
A voir sur le même sujet, the Life of Plants, un documentaire de la BBC signe
Trần Quốc
Dec 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Aug 29, 2016 rated it really liked it
The parallels between flowers and humankind are what enrich this book, already very layman-friendly and interesting.
Apr 30, 2009 rated it it was ok
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Maurice Polydore Marie Bernard Maeterlinck (also called Comte (Count) Maeterlinck from 1932; [mo.ʁis ma.tɛʁ.lɛːk] in Belgium, [mɛ.teʁ.lɛːk] in France; 29 August 1862 – 6 May 1949) was a Belgian playwright, poet, and essayist who was a Fleming, but wrote in French. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1911 "in appreciation of his many-sided literary activities, and especially of his dram ...more
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“There are other herbs endowed with spontaneous movements that are not so well known, notably the Hedysareæ, among which the Hedysa­rum gyrans, or Moving-plant, acts in a very restless and surprising fashion. This little Leguminosa, which is a native of Bengal, but often cultivated in our hothouses, performs a sort of perpetual and intricate dance in hon­our of the light. Its leaves are divided into three foli­oles, one wide and terminal, the two others narrow and planted at the base of the first. Each of these leaflets is animated with a different movement of its own. They live in a state of rhythmical, almost chronometrical and continuous agitation. They are so sensitive” 0 likes
“We cannot take leave of the aquatic plants without briefly mentioning the life of the most romantic of them all: the legendary Val­lisneria, an Hydrocharad whose nuptials form the most tragic episode in the love-history of the flowers. The Vallisneria is a rather insignificant herb, possess­ing none of the strange grace of the Water-lily or of certain submersed comas. But it seems as though nature had delighted in giving it a beautiful idea. The whole existence of the little plant is spent at the bottom of the water, in a sort of half-slumber, until the moment of the wedding-hour in which it aspires to a new life. Then the female flower slowly uncoils the long spiral of its peduncle, rises, emerges and floats and blossoms on the sur­face of the pond. From a neighbouring stem, the male flowers, which see it through the sunlit water, soar in their turn, full of hope, towards the one that rocks, that awaits them, that calls them to a magic world. But, when they have come half-way, they feel themselves suddenly held back: their stalk, the very source of their life, is too short; they will never reach the abode of light, the only spot in which the union of the stamens and the pistil can be achieved! .” 0 likes
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