Amà used to be Amaranth, until I transferred her to The Forgotten Coast. While there she was Amaranthe. When I returned to Cairne, I found my name taken. I didn’t think of Amaranthine until a few months later. When I found it available my initial thought was to make an alt with that name. As time went on I found I really hated having the odd character in Amà, so hence the name change. Amà is now Amaranthine.
My parents keep a 1938 dictionary in the basement. It is massive in two volumes and contains many anachronistic entries. When I began playing in simple chatrooms on the internet I needed to come up with a handle, and I wanted it to be meaningful. I started paging through the old dictionary, starting with the As and reading about any words that I didn’t recognize. When I hit Amaranth something in my heart went ZING! I have been using Amaranth as a handle on the internet for over a decade since.
What is an Amaranth?
Amaranthus is a genus of plants which can be used for grain, leaf vegetables, dyes, and for their beautiful flowers. One of the most commonly known species is Love-Lies-Bleeding (seen above).
Derived from the Greek word Amarantos, meaning unwithering, in Greek mythology the amaranth was considered a symbol of immortality, the everlasting flower said to have healing properties. It is from this definition that I took my inspiration (yes, I was once a Goth romantic).
From Aesop’s fables:
“An amaranth planted in a garden near a Rose-Tree, thus addressed it: “What a lovely flower is the Rose, a favorite alike with Gods and with men. I envy you your beauty and your perfume.” The Rose replied, “I indeed, dear Amaranth, flourish but for a brief season! If no cruel hand pluck me from my stem, yet I must perish by an early doom. But thou art immortal and dost never fade, but bloomest for ever in renewed youth.”
Over time I have run into other meanings, as I’ve met people and they have commented on my choice of name.
The first I ran into was a reference to Vampire: The Masquerade, in which Amaranth was an alternative name for Diablerie, the consuming of another vampire.
Amarant Coral was a character in Final Fantasy IX.
Musicians and poets have often written about the amaranth. Most recently I’ve run across the band Nightwish and their song Amaranth.