This one had to get up early to bear the numerous messages of the gods to each other and to the humans below. In Greek mythology, Iris was the constant, reliable faithful messenger. A goddess of both sea and sky, she appears time and time again as helper to Zeus, handmaiden to Hera, bearer of the water from the River Styx to keep the oaths of gods truthful, and appearing in the form of a rainbow, she would span heaven and earth, delivering what was bidden to mortals. Her name contains a double meaning, being connected both with iris, "the rainbow," and eiris, "messenger."

She is often depicted with golden wings, water pitcher, and a herald's staff and has nothing to do with this garden flower that I have painted.