A captivating history of one of the worlds most iconic and mysterious flowers Bewitched by a lotus which flowered from three-thousandyear- old seeds in his English garden, Mark Griffiths set out to track the origins and significance of this sublime plant in this beautifully-illustrated book. The Lotus Quest takes Griffiths from the headquarters of the Linnaean Society in London to a mountain top in northern Japan. As he travels in search of this ancient flower, Griffiths looks at the lotuss significance in ancient Egypt and India, the plants medicinal uses and the inspiration it has provided to Western artists. As he tracks the plant, its story unveils a stunning vision of Japans feudal era with visits to shrines, ruins, gardens and wild landscapes as well as meetings with priests and archaeologists, philosophers and anthropologists, gardeners and botanists, poets and artists. He even dines on the lotus in a Tokyo cafe. By the end of Griffiths journey, when he reaches the hauntingly beautiful Japanese temple of Chuson-ji, readers will finally understand why the lotus has obsessed people throughout the ages.