Phoenix dactylifera

The date palm’s name Phoenix dactylifera L. holds its own mystery. ‘Phoenix’ in ancient Greek was the name of a legendary bird that ‘lives forever’, because before dying it built its own funerary pile, set fire to it with its magical wings and arose again from its own ashes.9 In ancient Egypt, where the date palm was known from the first Pharaonic dynasties, the tree was linked to the sun-bird, the great Sun-god ‘Ra’ and the Sun itself.10