Yamato nadeshiko (やまとなでしこ or 大和撫子) is a Japanese term meaning the "personification of an idealized Japanese woman", or "the epitome of pure, feminine beauty"; poised, decorous, kind, gentle, graceful, humble, patient, virtuous, respectful, benevolent, honest, charitable, pious, faithful. It is a floral metaphor, combining the words Yamato, an ancient name for Japan, and nadeshiko, a delicate frilled pink carnation called Dianthus superbus, whose kanji translate into English as "caressable child".
The term "Yamato nadeshiko" is often used to describe a demure young woman and, in a contemporary context, nostalgically of women with good traits which are perceived as being increasingly rare. However, Nadeshiko Japan is also widely used as the name for the Japanese national women's football team.
- Kenkyūsha's New Japanese-English Dictionary (5th edition, 2003)
- Yang Ch'ien-ho and the Work of Writing Modern Selfhood. Satoko Kakihara1 University of California, San Diego
- "Contesting the Nation through a Genealogy of Girl Consciousness", Barbara Hartley, School of Asian Studies, University of Auckland
- Koujien, Iwanamishoten, all editions—entry for なでしこ
- Kanjigen, Gakken, all editions—entries for 撫, 子
- "大和撫子なんているの？ | 生活・身近な話題". 発言小町 (in Japanese). Retrieved 2019-10-20.
- Blackberries in the Dream House by Diane Frank. 1st World Publishing, 2003
- Japanese Women and Sport: Beyond Baseball and Sumo by Robin Kietlinski, A&C Black, 1 December 2011.